11 July 2024

The National Committee to Control Infectious Diseases is expected to upgrade Thailand’s preparedness to cope with COVID-19 to Stage 3, as a strengthened precautionary measure to prevent the further spread of the disease.

Public Health Minister Anutin Charnviral, in his capacity as chair of the committee, said that he expects the committee, at the meeting today (Monday), to announce the Stage 3 preparedness plan, even though the actual COVID-19 infection levels in Thailand have not yet reached the level that warrant the Stage 3 announcement.

He explained, however, that the measure is a precaution to prevent a repeat of the South Korean experience, which encountered the problem of people infected with the virus refusing medical treatment, causing the disease to spread.

Stage 3 means that COVID-19 will be designated as a dangerous infectious disease in Thailand and those infected cannot refuse medical treatment.

He went on to say that the 14-day house confinement for people returning from COVID-19 high-risk countries is not mandatory, but a request for cooperation, noting that people without symptoms can unknowingly be infected and can spread the disease.