Thailand reports 13 new infections today, no lockdown relaxation yet

Stranded Thai citizens wearing face masks wait for officials to check their documents at the customs checkpoint in Sungai Kolok in Thailand’s southern province of Narathiwat on the Thailand-Malaysia border on April 18, 2020, as part of strict measures to halt the spread of the COVID-19 coronavirus. – Thai authorities reopened the border posts to allow Thai workers to return in batches begining April 18, and undergo qurantine procedures after the two countries imposed restrictions due to the coronavirus pandemic. (Photo by MADAREE TOHLALA / AFP)

Thailand’s new COVID-19 infection rate fell to 13 today, but it is unlikely that the lockdown restrictions will be relaxed on May 1st, as had been hoped, in the 32 provinces with no new confirmed cases for over two weeks.

 

CCSA spokesman Dr. Taweesin Visanuyothin told the media today that the CCSA has never said that the measures would be eased in those 32 provinces. Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha, who is also the CCSA chairman, has always insisted on extreme caution, with all aspects to be considered and the approval of the cabinet being required before any restrictions are eased.

“It is now only April. We have just gone through four rounds. There are altogether 12 rounds,” said Dr. Taweesin as he likened the fight against COVID-19 to a 12-round boxing match.

 

The country’s accumulated infections to date are 2,839 and recoveries have increased to 2,430, including 78 more cases today. One new fatality was reported today, bringing total death toll to 50. 259 infected patients are still in hospital.

Dr. Taweesin said that new the infection rate has slowed, thanks to the cooperation of the public in observing the advice to stay at home and maintain social distancing.

 

The latest fatality was admitted to a hospital in Bangkok on March 21st with a brain haemorrhage, but she was later found to be infected with coronavirus. Her condition deteriorated steadily until her death on April 21st from septicemia and breathing failure.

Of the 13 new confirmed cases today, five were in contact with infected people, one is a Thai returnee from abroad, one visited a crowded place, two worked in a crowded workplace and three were the found as a result of pro-active testing in Phuket.

 

Dr. Taweesin said that nine provinces have not reported a new case for about a month, 32 provinces have reported no infections for over two weeks and 14 other provinces are without a single new infection for seven days.

Additionally, there are 10,942 cases under investigation in Bangkok, 4,060 cases in the southern border province of Yala, 3,578 cases in Nonthaburi and 2,136 cases in Phuket.

 

The Bangkok Metropolitan Administration has conducted random tests on 682 people in slums in Khlong Toei and Bang Khen districts after Songkran and found only one infection.

55 Thais are due back from Turkey and 144 from Malaysia today, while 31 Thai tourists and students from Japan and 171 Thai pilgrims from India are scheduled to arrive tomorrow.

 

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