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Officials introduce stricter “seal and bubble” measures for Samut Sakhon factory workers

Maya Taylor

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Officials introduce stricter “seal and bubble” measures for Samut Sakhon factory workers | The Thaiger
PHOTO: Nation Thailand

Health officials in the central province of Samut Sakhon, epicentre of the Covid-19 resurgence, say they will introduce tougher restrictions on factory workers in a bid to suppress the spread of the virus. The “seal and bubble” measures are being introduced after the discovery of nearly 8,000 cases during proactive testing at 7 factories in the province in recent weeks.

According to a Bangkok Post report, health officials have described the outbreak as worse than originally thought. Factories which provide on-site accommodation for workers will be “sealed”, meaning employees cannot leave the grounds. Workers from factories that don’t offer on-site dormitories, meaning they live and sleep elsewhere, will have to adhere to a “bubble” approach. Their movements will be strictly monitored, and officials may be required to deliver their food and other essentials, so they have no reason to leave their dormitories.

Provincial health official Surawit Sakdanupab says the “seal and bubble” strategy will be put into effect in the coming days, saying the “seal” method may have an impact on businesses in the area in the short-term. However, it’s expected to bring transmission under control within 28 days. He adds that the “bubble” method may prove more challenging. He is calling on factories to provide on-site accommodation where possible, saying closing individual factories would be a last resort.

The Centre for Covid-19 Situation Administration says officials will continue to carry out mass testing in the province, but it is currently costing the government 20 million baht to test 10,000 people a day.

Meanwhile, Health Minister Anutin Charnvirakul says the situation in Samut Sakhon is improving, with the proactive testing of 140,000 workers at 845 factories to date meaning officials have been able to pinpoint factories that need close monitoring.

SOURCE: Bangkok Post

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Coronavirus (Covid-19)

Governor of Samut Sakhon recovering from Covid-19 after more than 40 days on ventilator

Maya Taylor

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Governor of Samut Sakhon recovering from Covid-19 after more than 40 days on ventilator | The Thaiger
PHOTO: National News Bureau of Thailand

The governor of the central province of Samut Sakhon is slowly recovering after more than 2 months battling Covid-19. Weerasak Wichitsangsri tested positive for the virus in late December and subsequently ended up on a ventilator for over 40 days. It’s understood Weerasak’s time on the ventilator was a record for the hospital and at times, medics were unsure if he would recover.

Prasit Watanapa from the Faculty of Medicine at Siriraj Hospital says Weerasak is now off the ventilator and able to breathe normally, as well as talking, walking, and eating unaided. The Pattaya News reports that the governor’s symptoms improved over the last week, but he remains under close medical supervision. Prasit says he will be tested for antibodies, to determine if he should receive the Covid-19 vaccine.

“Only his muscle functions still need to be treated. The medical team is considering if the governor could have his rehabilitation at home or at Siriraj Hospital. It all depends on his further recovery.”

Weerasak has now been in hospital for more than 2 months, after testing positive for the virus on December 28, after attending a meeting at Samut Sakhon hospital. The central province is seen as the epicentre of the second wave of the virus, which emerged late last year. Public Health Minister, Anutin Charnvirakul, who was also at the meeting, had to self-isolate following Weerasak’s diagnosis.

SOURCE: The Pattaya News

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Thai police officer gets slap down after trying to marry mistress

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Thai police officer gets slap down after trying to marry mistress | The Thaiger

A Thai policeman is making headlines after getting a slap down from his own mother after he attempted to marry his mistress. The man went as far as scheduling a wedding, with monks present to bless the union, but his mom and real wife of 16 years, along with their kids, aged 5 and 15, crashed the party.

Nipapan Peuchpen, his legal wife, brought her marriage license to the nuptuals that took place in Chai Nat province, arguing that her husband had no right to marry another woman.

“This is our marriage license. I don’t know how they can go through with this.”

The policeman told his wife that the monks were already here, and that she wasn’t a guest and to go home. Then the man’s mother showed up and slapped him in the head. According to Khaosod English, the mother issued a statement to Amarin TV.

“I always taught him to not mess around with adultery. I warned him so many times. Now he has to reap what he sowed. At first, I understood that being adulterous to some extent was normal for men. But I didn’t think he would go this far.”

“I want this to be a lesson to all women! If you know a man already has a family, don’t be a homewrecker. I don’t understand why the bride got married to him, knowing that he was already married.”

Nipapan and her lawyer filed a legal complaint to the Chai Nai Juvenile and Family Court against the policeman’s girlfriend, asking for compensation for trying to marry her husband when he was already married.

Thailand has always been a culture where adultery has somewhat been tolerated, as many Thai men have lovers on the side, called a Mia Noi. But, legally, only 1 marriage can be registered at a time.

SOURCE: Khaosod English

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Traders at 2 Pathum Thani markets unhappy with extended closure order

Maya Taylor

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Traders at 2 Pathum Thani markets unhappy with extended closure order | The Thaiger
Video screenshot: Thai PBS

Traders at 2 wet markets in the central province of Pathum Thani have expressed their frustration at the decision to keep the markets closed until next Thursday. The Pornpat and Suchart markets, in the Thanyaburi district, have been closed since last Friday and were supposed to re-open yesterday. However, officials have extended the closure in response to a number of new Covid-19 infections.

However, vendors say the new cases are not linked to the markets and the ongoing closure is having a significant impact on traders who are struggling to put food on the table and pay their bills. Noodle seller Pannee Paophan from Pornpat market says they haven’t received any discount on rent or any other assistance from the market owners. She adds that every vendor in the market has already been tested for the virus, but officials are now testing people who live nearby and wrongly attributing positive cases to the market.

The Bangkok Post reports that Pannee was speaking to the media while Public Health Minister Anutin Charnvirakul was visiting the market. Another vendor at Suchart market echoes Pannee’s comments. The fishball seller, named only as Onn, says factory workers who live near the market are being tested for Covid-19 and new infections are being reported as having come from the market. He says all workers at the market have already been tested, pointing out that while the market only has about 1,000 workers, officials say they have tested over 3,000. Onn says the extra cases are not from the market and is worried that more positive cases will lead to the closure being extended even further.

“The authorities initially told us that the markets would be closed for 5 days, but now the closure has been extended for 9 more days. I want to ask what the vendors will eat. We are suffering now.”

Meanwhile, the governor of Pathum Thani, Chaiwat Chuenkosum, says that when vaccines become available, vendors at both markets will be vaccinated.

SOURCE: Bangkok Post

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