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Omicron Covid-19 variant isn’t in Thailand, DDC director says

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Stock photo by Mufid Majnun for Unsplash

The Omicron Covid-19 variant isn’t in Thailand, director-general of the Department of Disease Control said yesterday, assuring the public that the mutated strain of the virus virus is not “travelling” into the country by tourists. Dr Opas Karnkawinpong said that all “sandbox” visitors are being closely and stringently monitored by health authorities.

“All 1,007 travellers from South Africa who recently arrived in Thailand tested negative for Covid-19.”

Thai authorities are now setting restrictions to prevent the strain spreading in Thailand and issuance of the Thailand Pass has been suspended for 8 countries in Southern Africa.

According to Rachada Dhnadirek, a deputy government spokesperson, the Department of Medical Sciences has uncovered no evidence of a single incidence of the variation in Thailand, adding that her department is now telling all private hospitals to submit specimens from all patients who test positive for Covid-19 to be genetically analysed in order to identify each patient’s strain and prevalence.

The Ramathibodi Hospital’s Centre for Medical Genomics is working on a test kit to accurately detect the Omicron mutant using mass array technology, which should be finished in approximately two weeks.

The secretary-general of Chulabhorn Royal Academy, Prof Dr Nithi Mahanonda, also encouraged the public to remain calm and watch out for more information.

The novel mutation virus “Omicron” was first discovered in South Africa and has since been found in Australia, the United Kingdom, Germany, Israel, Italy, and Hong Kong last week.

SOURCE: Bangkok Post

 

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