11 July 2024

Checkpoints have been set up on main roads linking Thailand’s Songkhla province with Yala, Pattani and Narathiwat for the random screening of people coming from the three southern border provinces, in an escalated attempt to prevent the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic.

New infections in the three provinces continue to surge, with Pattani logging 566 cases today (Wednesday), the most in southern region.

Dr. Anurak Saraparb, the provincial health chief, said today that tighter measures have been imposed on eateries, requiring both the operators, staff and dine-in customers to be fully inoculated, otherwise the customers can only use take-away services.

He also said that the provincial administration has hastened the setting up of community isolation facilities, with capacity to accommodate up to 10,000 patients, to cope with the rising number of infections in the province.

In Muang district of Yala province, 27 labourers at a para-rubber factory have been isolated at home and at their work place after they tested positive for COVID-19, because the general and field hospitals are full.

Songkhla Governor Jesada Chitrat, meanwhile, said that health officials have stepped up vaccination efforts, with the aim to inoculate up to 70% of the population within this month.

Social gatherings, such as morning tea gatherings, without wearing face masks and a reluctance to get vaccinated have been blamed for surges in infection numbers.