Thailand expects spike in Covid-19 cases after Songkran

16 Apr 2023 08:59pm
Songkran - For illustration purpose - Photo 123RF
Songkran - For illustration purpose - Photo 123RF
BANGKOK - Thailand is closely monitoring the COVID-19 situation in the country following Songkran Festival as health authorities anticipate a significant increase in the number of cases resulting from social gatherings, activities, and travel to home provinces.

The Department of Disease Control (DDC) said the lifting of all preventive measures, including the absence of testing requirements before joining activities, may result in an increase in the number of COVID-19 cases.

In addition, it said there are fewer people wearing masks while they are outdoors.

"The public is advised to take precautionary measures, such as monitoring themselves for any COVID-19 symptoms for at least seven days, and maintaining distance from the elderly and those with chronic illnesses,” it said in a statement.

Meanwhile, DDC’s director-general Thares Krasanairawiwong said there were 435 COVID-19 patients admitted to hospital with an average of 62 cases per day, from April 9 to 15.

During the same period, there were 30 cases of lung inflammation reported and 19 were put on ventilators, an increase of 58 per cent and 36 per cent respectively compared to a week before.

"Two deaths were reported during the same period,” he said, adding that the deceased had received booster shots about three months ago.

He urged the public, particularly the elderly and those with underlying diseases, to receive a booster shot.

Meanwhile, Dr Sopon Iamsirthavorn said a total of six cases of XBB.1.16, the new COVID-19 variant, has been detected in Thailand to date.
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