Thai Health Ministry to tighten anti-COVID-19 measures at quarantine facilities
Thailand’s Ministry of Public Health is considering adjustments to the COVID-19 preventive measures at more than 100 hotels under the alternative state quarantine programme, as well as any use of common facilities by those in quarantine at such locations. The move is to avoid a repeat of an incident in Samut Prakan province, where coronavirus was found on fitness equipment and three people staying there, including a French tourist, were found to be infected.
Dr. Tharet Karatnairawiwong, Director General of the Department of Health Services Support, said today that, in the near future, arrivals from abroad, including Thai returnees to be quarantined at such facilities, will be divided into different groups, according to the pandemic situation in their countries of departure.
He said that, during the 14-day mandatory quarantine, those in hotel based quarantine will still be allowed to leave their rooms for recreation or exercise in specific areas, but preventive measures will have to be tightened up, such as social distancing and regular disinfection of fitness equipment, adding that some facilities might have been lax in the enforcement of the preventive measures.
At present, there are 101 hotels, with 13,004 rooms, being used as quarantine facilities. Two more are being assessed and seven others are pending approval. There are also 21 alternative local quarantine facilities in Buri Ram, Chon Buri, Phuket, Prachin Buri and Surat Thani, provinces which receive direct flights from abroad.
Meanwhile, the CCSA reported four new COVID-19 cases in Thailand today, bringing cumulative infections in the country, to date, to 3,763.
Among the four new infections is a Thai female student returning from Japan, a 40-year old Thai masseuse returning from the United Arab Emirates, one 67-year old Kuwaiti woman and a 19-year old Kuwaiti student, who both arrived from Kuwait.
Nine patients have recovered today, bringing total recoveries to 3,570, with 134 others still being treated in hospitals.