GPO and FDA told to increase production of face masks and sanitizers
The Government Pharmaceutical Organization (GPO) and the Office of the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) have been instructed, by the Ministry of Public Health, to step up production of face masks and sanitizers to cope with increasing demand, in light of the health threat posed by novel coronavirus.
In the meantime, the GPO, the FDA’s Office and the Public Health Ministry’s operations centre are to meet with the Internal Trade Department of the Commerce Ministry tomorrow (Thursday) to discuss measures to prevent a shortage of hygienic face masks.
Disease Control Department deputy director-general Dr. Asdang Ruey-arjin said that there are different kinds of face masks for different purposes. For instance, he said face masks made of cloth are suitable for the general public, who do not have a respiratory problem, to protect themselves against infection by respiratory diseases and they can be re-used after cleaning, while masks used by medical personnel are suitable for medical practitioners to prevent them from spreading disease to other people.
N95 face masks are also suitable for medical personnel to prevent infection being passed from their patients, but they must be properly disposed of when they are no longer in use.
Meanwhile, Dr. Thiravat Hmachudha, a lecturer at the Medical Science Faculty of Chulalongkorn University, suggested governmental agencies start fumigating or spraying disinfectants on all public transport vehicles to protect commuters from contracting coronavirus.
He said that there is a greater chance of infection when travelling in public transport, such as buses and taxis, as evidenced by several drivers of public transport becoming infected.