Coronavirus (Covid-19)Thailand

Anutin: rise in Covid-19 infections is from careless New Year’s

FILE PHOTO: Anutin believes careless partiers and travellers is causing an infection spike, but death rates hold steady.

Minister of Public Health Anutin Charnvirakul says that the surge in new Covid-19 infections is to be expected after the New Year’s holiday, but the fact that the number of daily deaths has not risen significantly is it good sign following current scientific data that reveals that the Omicron variant is more transmissible but less severe than the currently dominant Delta strain.

Only 11 deaths were recorded yesterday, in line with the average numbers over the past week, though daily infections shot up from below 3000 to 5,775 in today’s data. Anutin vow to remain vigilant and announced that in the face of the rising Omicron infections, the Department of Disease Control is mulling over restrictions and strategies.

“The Department of Disease Control is considering bringing back some preventive measures and postponing the easing of certain restrictions.”

While the new spike in infections is most certainly due to travel and celebration over the New Year’s holiday, and therefore predictably expected, Anutin still stresses that it was made worse by the restaurants, bars, and pubs that were allowed to open for the holiday but failed to implement any sort of Covid-19 safety procedures. He said that venues didn’t enforce mask-wearing or social distancing, or limit the number of attendees and follow the approved hours of operation.

While the increase in Covid-19 infections is alarming, it’s a far cry from the peak last year of around 28,000 daily infections. Anutin says that Thailand is in a much better position now than it was when the third wave blindsided the mostly Covid-free country last year.

“The current situation is much better, as about 70% of Thais have been vaccinated, while around 8 million to 9 million people have already received booster shots. I believe the Covid-19 situation this year will be significantly improved than the previous year.”

SOURCE: Nation Thailand

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Neill Fronde

Neill is a journalist from the United States with 10+ years broadcasting experience and national news and magazine publications. He graduated with a degree in journalism and communications from the University of California and has been living in Thailand since 2014.