11 July 2024

The Bangkok Metropolitan Administration (BMA) is considering reactivating community isolation facilities in 50 districts for COVID-19 patients in slum areas, to separate the infected from those over 60 years old, people suffering from underlying diseases and pregnant women, as new infections hit 2,000 a day in the capital alone.

While urging them to get booster shots, Bangkok Governor Chadchart Sittipunt said today (Friday) that this group is particularly vulnerable if they catch COVID-19 and, therefore, the infected should be isolated because of the crowded conditions in densely populated areas.

The governor also said that the BMA is coordinating with the Public Health Ministry to procure Molnupiravir tablets at special price, to be administered to patients under its care.

During the peak of the pandemic last year, several community isolation facilities and field hospitals were opened in Bangkok and elsewhere to accommodate patients with mild symptoms. Health officials monitored the patients’ their conditions and supplied medication.

Meanwhile, Deputy Bangkok Governor Asst. Prof. Dr. Tavida Kamolvej offered an assurance that the BMA’s hospitals, are capable of handling serious cases, although only 40% of beds remain unoccupied.

She said that those who are infected, including migrant workers, can seek medical services at health centres or clinics operated by the BMA, adding that elderly people, or those suffering from underlying diseases, whose conditions are serious, will be admitted.

Regarding students at 457 BMA-run schools, Dr. Tavida disclosed that only about 1% have been found to be infected and most of them are high schoolers.

Infections in schools are still manageable and there is not yet a need for a suspension of classes, she said, adding that schools are prepared to introduce online learning in case of clusters of infections among students.