Connect with us

Coronavirus (Covid-19)

Doctors say Covid-19 first wave may be over, but warn against complacency

Published

 on 

PHOTO: Dr Anupong Sujariyakul - Thai PBS World

A spokesman for the Department of Disease Control says the “first wave” of the Covid-19 outbreak in Thailand is over after the country seeing no cases of community transmissions for 44 straight days. Dr Anupong Sujariyakul warned, however, that the kingdom must be prepared for the possibility of a second wave, as the contagion is still spreading in many parts of the world, with several countries thought to have eliminated the virus already experiencing second outbreaks.

Anupong says the Ministry of Public Health supports the government’s plan to open the country slowly and cautiously, in order to restart its struggling economy, while still keeping its guard up by strictly observing the basic rules of hygiene: wearing face masks, regular handwashing, and social distancing.

As for the warning from scientists in 32 countries to the World Health Organization that Covid-19 can be spread through airborne droplets smaller than 5 microns, Anupong says the Public Health Ministry has previously explained that the contagion can be transmitted through airborne droplets.  He notes, however, that the transmissions occur in enclosed environments such as intensive care units, but not in open spaces with good ventilation and sunlight. He advised the public to not be overly concerned about an airborne contagion at this point.

“If Covid-19 could be easily transmitted through the air, like tuberculosis, then worldwide operations would not be just 11-12 million cases, but many more.”

The deputy director of the DDC warns that Thai people are becoming less concerned about the prospect of a second wave and may actually be encouraging the return of contagion. On his Facebook page, Dr Thanarak Plipat was asked if the country is ripe for a second wave. His answer was “yes” as he pointed to the behavior of many Thais “who are putting Thailand at an increased risk,” saying many stores and shops no longer insist on the wearing of masks and customers appear to be more confident about not wearing them.

“Whether the disease will return again depends on the Thai people, and I personally feel that they are not afraid of Covid-19 and want it to return.”

Thanarak added that this attitude is very dangerous, and he wants people to “come to their senses.” He cited a report by Dr Taweesilp Visanuyothin, spokesman for the Center for Covid-19 Situation Administration, saying that about 3,000 migrant workers recently reentered Thailand after the easing of lockdown restrictions, noting that some of these people could be infected and may spread the disease.

“The best protection we currently have is to wear masks and observe the other safety measures.”

The director of the General Contagious Diseases Division echoed the words of both doctors, saying the fact that Thailand has been without local infection for 44 consecutive days doesn’t mean the disease has been eradicated. He warns that it could return with a vengeance “if we lower our guard and ignore basic safety measures.”

Doctors say Covid-19 first wave may be over, but warn against complacency | News by Thaiger

PHOTO: Dr Thanarak Plipat – Dtac blog

SOURCES: Thai PBS World | Thai PBS World 

 

Get more from The Thaiger

Join the conversation and have your say on Thailand news published on The Thaiger.

Thaiger Talk is our new Thaiger Community where you can join the discussion on everything happening in Thailand right now.

Please note that articles are not posted to the forum instantly and can take up to 20 min before being visible. Click for more information and the Thaiger Talk Guidelines.

Jack Burton is an American writer, broadcaster, linguist and journalist who has lived in Asia since 1987. A native of the state of Georgia, he attended the The University of Georgia's Henry Grady School of Journalism, which hands out journalism's prestigious Peabody Awards. His works have appeared in The China Post, The South China Morning Post, The International Herald Tribune and many magazines throughout Asia and the world. He is fluent in Mandarin and has appeared on television and radio for decades in Taiwan, Mainland China, Hong Kong and Macau.

Follow Thaiger by email:

Myanmar21 mins ago

Aung San Suu Kyi receives additional 6-year prison sentence

Thailand14 hours ago

Thailand News Today | Opposition to extending nightlife to 4am

Crime15 hours ago

Police officer who shot noodle vender sentenced to 25 years

Road deaths15 hours ago

Truck overturns in NE Thailand, driver dies, losing 1.5 million baht of beer

Transport15 hours ago

Thailand Transport Ministry seeks foreign loans for new bridges

Central Thailand15 hours ago

Elephant calf stamped to death in central Thailand

Join the conversation on the Thaiger Talk forums today!
Chon Buri16 hours ago

Mountain B Pub’s real owner surrenders while police guard venue

Road deaths16 hours ago

Motorcycle rider killed in multi-vehicle pile-up near Bangkok

Crime16 hours ago

Hong Kong man goes to Thailand to meet ‘lover,’ gets trafficked to Myanmar

Thailand17 hours ago

A monk dies in yet another day of Buddhist shame in Thailand

Economy17 hours ago

Electricity prices soar 18% to 4.72 baht per unit next month

Best of17 hours ago

Top 5 Boarding Schools in Thailand (2022)

Crime17 hours ago

Four national park officials indicted over Karen activist’s murder in western Thailand

Thailand17 hours ago

100 Consecutive Days of food handouts to the homeless of Bangkok

Protests18 hours ago

Nearly 1,000 locals protest over fatal road in central Thailand

Thailand11 months ago

Morning Top Stories Thailand | Police to end protests, Human Trafficking | September 14

Thailand1 year ago

Thailand News Today | Thai Airways in rehab, All go for Songkran | March 4

Tourism1 year ago

Phuket’s nightlife. Yes, bars and clubs are still open | VIDEO

Phuket1 year ago

Thailand News Today | Covid passport talks, Thai Airways heads to court | March 2

Tourism1 year ago

Phuket Thai food treats you need to try | VIDEO

Thailand1 year ago

Thailand News Today | Bars, pubs and restaurants ‘sort of’ back to normal | Feb 23

Tourism1 year ago

In search of Cat & Dog Cafés in Phuket Town | VIDEO

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Gambling crackdown, Seafood market to reopen, Vlogger challenge | Jan 21

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Covid testing for visas, Business impact, Vaccine approval | January 19

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Weekend Bangkok bombs, Thailand fires, Covid update | January 18

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Stray car on runway, Indonesian quake, 300 baht tourist fee | January 15

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Governor off respirator, sex-trafficking arrest, condo prices falling | January 14

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Chinese vaccine, Thailand ‘drug hub’, Covid update | January 13

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Bangkok may ease restrictions, Phuket bar curfew, Vaccine roll out | January 12

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Covid latest, Cockfights closed down, Bryde’s Whale beached | January 11

Trending