11 July 2024

COVID-19 infections in 44 of Thailand’s provinces, including Bangkok, have been increasing, with an average rate of 31,148 cases a day between August 7th and 13th, according to Spokesman for the Centre for COVID-19 Situation Administration (CCSA) Dr. Taweesin Visanuyothin.

The death toll, during the same period, was 236, most of whom were people over 60, those with underlying diseases and pregnant women. There were also 853 serious cases, including 436 on ventilators.

Dr. Taweesin said that he would like the public to continue to wear face masks while they are outdoors and among people, noting that not getting infected is the best means of protection.

CCSA advisor, Dr. Udom Kachinthorn said today (Friday), before the CCSA meeting, that the actual infection rate should, however, be between 60,000 and 70,000 cases a day, as many are not reported to the authorities.

He anticipates that the high infection rate will remain for about a month, after which it will steadily decline, with the number of hospitalisations reducing to about 1,000 cases a day and the COVID related death toll declining to about 10 per day.

Dr. Taweesin said restrictions on the procurement of anti-viral medication will be eased on September 1st, with private medical facilities being able to buy the drugs independently and pharmacies being able to sell the drugs directly to patients who have doctor’s prescription.

State-run health and medical units can also procure the drugs themselves, without relying on the Government Pharmaceutical Organization (GPO), beginning October 1st, he added.

As of August 17th, there are about 4.9 million Favipiravir tablets, 6.7 million Molnupiravir tablets and 38,425 Remdesivir pills in the government’s inventory.

Dr. Taweesin said that the stock of anti-viral drugs is enough to meet the demand, but they must be used reasonably and should be reserved for those who need them most.

He said that the CCSA did not discuss the state of emergency today, as they consider that there is still enough time to review the issue.

Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha said, that the emergency decree is still necessary to control the spread of COVID-19 adding, however, that he is ready to scrap the law when the situation permits.

He insisted that the law is intended to limit the spread of COVID-19 and not for any other purpose.