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Coronavirus (Covid-19)

No national lockdown, more than 25 provinces “at risk” of Covid-19

Caitlin Ashworth



PHOTO: Siamrath

Despite a record high in Covid-19 cases, the Thai government has declared no national lockdown. Provinces are now classified on a colour-scale depending on the level of risk for Covid-19.

The vast majority of cases are concentrated in Samut Sakhon around a seafood market in Mahachai, a major fishing hub in Thailand. In earlier reports, health officials said 90% of the cases are asymptomatic. More than 1,000 cases have been reported in Samut Sakhon, largely affecting a migrant community in the area.

Red (high risk for Covid-19): Samut Sakhon

Orange (medium risk for Covid-19): Bangkok, Samut Songkram, Ratchaburi and Nakhon Pathom

Yellow (low risk for Covid-19): Saraburi, Samut Prakan, Suphan Buri, Nonthaburi, Pathum Thani, Uttaradit, Chachoengsao, Kamphaeng Phet, Phetchabun, Phra Nakhon Si Ayutthaya, Phuket, Phetchaburi, Nakhon Ratchasima, Prachinburi, Krabi, Khon Kaen, Chainat, Udon Thani, Phichit, Nakhon Si Thammarat, Surat Thani, Prachuap Khiri Khan, Chaiyaphum, Nakhon Sawan, Ang Thong

Provinces that have zero Covid-19 infections are classified as green.

No national lockdown, more than 25 provinces "at risk" of Covid-19 | News by Thaiger

Active Covid-19 cases in Thailand as of December 24, according to Worldometers.

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  1. Avatar

    Mister Stretch

    Thursday, December 24, 2020 at 1:20 pm

    It’s not easy being green…but nice.

  2. Avatar

    Jitendra Bahubali

    Thursday, December 24, 2020 at 1:57 pm

    greeen Provinces means there is either no testing or very low testing. If they test the entire population of Thailand the cases will be 0.2% of total tests.

    • The Thaiger

      The Thaiger

      Thursday, December 24, 2020 at 4:40 pm

      Pure speculative play on maths.

      • Avatar


        Thursday, December 31, 2020 at 7:51 pm

        As is testing. Your entire reporting regime is pure speculation.

  3. Avatar


    Thursday, December 24, 2020 at 2:11 pm

    Even a lot positive coved tested….how many dead : ZERO !
    So no big deal !

    • Avatar

      Graham White

      Thursday, December 24, 2020 at 2:42 pm

      Yesterday they gave figures for Thai only, not including migrants. Today, up to now, no figures. Why? Must be bad. If it was good they would say.

  4. Avatar


    Thursday, December 24, 2020 at 3:32 pm

    I had to cancel my holiday yesterday because of lockdown fear in the media. Now its open and my holiday is ruined. Thanks a lot!

    • The Thaiger

      The Thaiger

      Thursday, December 24, 2020 at 4:37 pm

      What, because we reported a story and did our job?

    • Avatar


      Thursday, December 24, 2020 at 6:18 pm

      Well, that’s your bad.

      • Avatar


        Friday, December 25, 2020 at 2:02 pm

        Been living here for 15 years. This “virus” has a 99.9% survival rate. A few people gets the flu and the Government threatens to shut provinces down. Im done. Leaving in January. Booked a flight yesterday. Feeling very good. Good luck to all of you staying put in the so called “land of smiles”. Keep fooling yourself thinking that this is the place to be. Its not been like that in decades. Good luck.

        • The Thaiger

          The Thaiger

          Saturday, December 26, 2020 at 9:09 am

          “This “virus” has a 99.9% survival rate.” That is incorrect.

          • Avatar

            preesy chepuce

            Monday, December 28, 2020 at 10:38 pm

            In general less than 0.1% die of the virus, and that is self-evident, stop peddling fake news.

    • Avatar

      Issan John

      Thursday, December 24, 2020 at 8:32 pm

      You “had to”? On whose orders? The wife’s?

  5. Avatar

    John Brown

    Thursday, December 24, 2020 at 4:55 pm

    This is an unfortunate and dangerous misuse of the epidemic color classification system. Used correctly, Green Zones are those that have not had any local transmission within the past 14 days *and* do not share an unrestricted border with any zone that has had a single one.

    Given that there are no travel restrictions in place between provinces, then ALL PROVINCES are currently red zones, and will remain so until 14 days have passed and adequate testing (along with clinical diagnoses and investigations) has shown that no local transmissions have occurred. A reduction in testing during this period is an automatic disqualification and clock reset.

    The kind of color fudging done here helps no one, and harms our approximately 70-75 million residents.

    • Avatar


      Thursday, December 24, 2020 at 6:16 pm

      Sorry you didn’t get your way. ?

      • Avatar

        John Brown

        Thursday, December 24, 2020 at 7:02 pm

        Yes, there is unfortunately a significant chance you will be sorry about the consequences of public health policy not following the path of science and reason, whether you live in Thailand or merely wish to be a visitor. I do wish it weren’t so. 🙁

        • Avatar

          Issan John

          Thursday, December 24, 2020 at 8:44 pm

          To be fair, Thailand’s “public health policy” is far more drivn by “science” than the policies in the West, which is why it’s worked so much better.

          If you’d had your way, you’d have apparently had Thailand completely locked down for the last nine months with no restaurants, bars, sports stadiums, and other facilities open at all. a curfew, and borders closed to any movement at all, all baseed on your supposed insider knowledge.

          Sorry, but that would have been completely unjustifiable and absurd.

          • Avatar

            John Brown

            Thursday, December 24, 2020 at 9:40 pm

            Are the travel restrictions multilateral or bilateral? And are they either comprehensive or principled, rather than arbitrary? To illustrate, are there any zones with ongoing local transmission that do not have travel restrictions to a zone without any ongoing local transmission?

            The purpose of a two-axis zoning system – geographical bounds and risk levels – is to establish metrics by which decisions, and not just observations, can be systematically made about the interactions of discrete elements of a system, rather than working around a policy of judgment calls. This allows policy-makers (whether they are government officials or a group of neighbours) to make predictions, observe results, and draw robust inferences.

            Different states or communities may implement the specifics of color zoning differently, but within strong parameters; there is no scientific color zoning system aimed at preventing the spread of disease that that does not implement travel restrictions between a red zone and somewhere else. Any implementation is ultimately goal-oriented.

            Apologies for being presumptuous about the shared and/or common academic knowledge – I was referring to the canonical “Color Zone Pandemic Response” (Shen & Bar-Yam 2020), which draws from previous work done during Ebola, and the primary developments therefrom. I am of course aware that state-level implementations borrowing the same language have differed.

          • Avatar

            John Brown

            Thursday, December 24, 2020 at 9:56 pm

            I think we might have different standards for what we consider scientific, John. It wouldn’t have occurred to me to compare with European or American policies at all. More like Singapore, South Korea, Taiwan.

            Are you feeling all right today? Some of your responses earlier (to other commenters) have seemed a little… belligerent. Lacked the levity I’ve seen from you often.

            You are clearly presuming a lot, and incorrectly, about what public health policies I support, both in general and with my specific knowledge of both the medical and epidemiological situations here (incomplete as they are, they do contain details not available to those who aren’t consultants to those situations and are therefore not privy). Would you like to know more about what I really think? Or would you rather continue to imagine, and so straw-man, my positions for me? Honest question. Will be genuine and respectful either way. I’m not here to argue, but to try and help, and if you do not think that the input is helpful, I will take that into consideration in future comments and replies.

          • Avatar

            preesy chepuce

            Monday, December 28, 2020 at 10:43 pm

            That’s such bogus claptrap. There’s insufficient credible evidence to make any claims about the efficacy of Thailand’s response over that of “the West” (which, btw, is several quite different countries with quite different policies), how you can spout such unsubstantiated drivel over and over again is hard to understand. The unscientific policies kicking around look set to make the cure cause more casualties than the disease at the rate they’re going. <0.1% die of this bug, in all but the most statistically anomolous microstates.

        • Avatar

          Issan John

          Thursday, December 24, 2020 at 10:45 pm

          Sorry, John B, but I have absolutely no idea what point you’re trying to make with your comments of 9.40 and 9.56 PM beyond that I’m “clearly presuming a lot, and incorrectly, about what public health policies I support”.

          You seem to have had a Google Translate vaccination.

          If you haven’t made comments making it pretty clear that “you’d have apparently had Thailand completely locked down for the last nine months with no restaurants, bars, sports stadiums, and other facilities open at all, a curfew, and borders closed to any movement at all, all based on your supposed insider knowledge” then someone must have hacked your e-mail / IP address, since that’s exactly what “John Brown” has commented. Several times.

          • Avatar

            John Brown

            Friday, December 25, 2020 at 1:39 am

            In the comment at 9.40, I attempted to explain to you how color zoning for pandemic response works. Perhaps I can clear up some confusion by addressing your comparison to the UK’s use of a color-coded *alert system*, which is different from color *zoning*. A color-coded alert system used in a single locality only has one axis, which is an axis that describes risk (low risk high risk). A color zoning system is one that adds a second dimension describing relative locations (which are most often geographical bounds but not always). What happens when we add the second dimension is we get a way to think about how different zones – like provinces, or districts, or neighborhoods, etc – within the same system affect each other, and how we can use those effects to quickly draw down risks from high to low and bring local epidemics to an end. The UK’s use of colors points at *risk level* in a single zone; Thailand’s use of colors as seen in this article above points at *multiple zones* of relative risk levels. Do you see the difference? My point was that Thailand is using color zoning non-scientifically, without understanding the deeper purpose of delineating geographic zones. Used correctly, zones are meant to effectively and systematically contain the spread of infectious disease from one zone to another and to draw down the level of risk zone by zone, not just to describe how much risk exists. Does that help? See the pandemic paper I cited upon your request for a more full understanding.

            In my comment at 9.56, I responded to the two basic points you made in your comment at 8.44:

            (1) your objection to my description of Thailand’s public health policy as divergent from the path of science and reason, where you made the comparison to the policies in Western countries, implying that the reason I thought Thailand’s approach is not scientific is because I was doing the same. I pointed out that I hadn’t even considered that the European and American approaches would be be considered remotely scientific, stated that I was making no such comparison, and gave you a few examples of other countries that could be considered scientific in their approaches, and were therefore worth the comparison;

            (2) your assertion, without evidence, that I think Thailand should have been locked down and and curfewed and closed for business for the past nine months, which took me quite by surprise. Now, I acknowledge that it is possible someone else has posted under “John Brown” and I have not noticed; I have been far too busy to read all the articles, let alone all the comments. Perhaps you could let me know where you thought I either said or implied that I thought Thailand should have been under lockdown for the past nine months? This idea is so absurd that it has never even crossed my mind, so I wonder how it is that you have imagined it, or what it was that someone else pretending to be me could have written. Please do point it out, if you are able, unless you wish to skip over explaining how you came to be thus misinformed about my opinion so that we may head straight to the substance of what the persons who are talking to each other actually do think, and hopefully a more directly productive conversation can ensue on the topic.

            What do you think? I have a slight preference for the latter because it saves time, but am willing to do the former because there is often long-term value in clearing up misunderstandings by discovering how they came to be.

    • Avatar

      Issan John

      Thursday, December 24, 2020 at 8:37 pm

      Actually, John B, there ARE some travel restrictions in place.

      … and it’s hardly a “misuse” of a system, as there is no “correct” way of using colours as there’s no set standard – the UK, for example, has a five colour system which has no connection with the one you’re citing at all.

      • Avatar

        John Brown

        Thursday, December 24, 2020 at 10:53 pm

        I accidentally sent my reply to this comment to your other, later, comment up-thread.

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Caitlin Ashworth is a writer from the United States who has lived in Thailand since 2018. She graduated from the University of South Florida St. Petersburg with a bachelor’s degree in journalism and media studies in 2016. She was a reporter for the Daily Hampshire Gazette In Massachusetts. She also interned at the Richmond Times-Dispatch in Virginia and Sarasota Herald-Tribune in Florida.

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