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Thai government considering “targeted lockdown”, new colour-coding of provinces



PHOTO: Flickr / Ian Guttridge

Amid growing calls to impose a national lockdown to curb the spread of Covid-19, Thailand’s government is considering a more moderate response. According to the Bangkok Post, Kiattiphum Wongrajit from the Public Health Ministry is proposing “targeted lockdown” restrictions and a new colour classification for high-risk provinces.

At a meeting held yesterday, officials agreed a revised approach to colour-coding, to replace the current red, orange, yellow, green system. Under the new approach, there will be only 3 colour-coded zones. Dark red will apply to areas under maximum control, followed by red and orange. Kiattiphum says provincial officials are authorised to adopt targeted lockdown measures locally.

Also discussed at yesterday’s meeting was the hospital bed crisis in Bangkok, which Kiattiphum says is being addressed.

“It was found the problem stems from management procedures. Therefore, we discussed ways to better handle management of beds.”

He insists there are currently enough beds, but should the situation worsen over the next 2 weeks, there will be a shortage of beds for severely ill people. He adds that hospitalisation for those with only mild symptoms is being reduced to 10 days from 14, in order to free up more beds.

Meanwhile, deputy government spokesperson, Traisuree Taisaranakul, says PM Prayut Chan-o-cha is in talks with the private sector regarding the procurement of vaccines. On Wednesday, the PM will meet with a number of business representatives, including the Federation of Thai Industries, the Thai Bankers’ Association, and the Association of Thai Travel Agents, among others.

“They will be given an opportunity to present proposals to buy more vaccine doses and ideas on how to distribute them after the private sector wanted to procure vaccine doses for personnel in the industrial sector.”

Yesterday, Thailand reported a record high of 11 new deaths, including a pregnant woman. The death toll now stands at 140 since the beginning of the pandemic. 2,438 new infections were logged yesterday, only 5 of which were imported.

SOURCE: Bangkok Post


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  1. Sydney B

    Monday, April 26, 2021 at 9:26 am

    Surely the PM would have learned from the mistakes of some other Countries how important it is to get the vaccs programme rolled out asap. He appears to be ‘window shopping’ with little regard for the Thai people.

  2. David Pilkington

    Monday, April 26, 2021 at 9:32 am

    The Thai PM is now resorting, ‘resort’ being the operative word here, to giving the rich industrialists and bankers – i.e. the people that ACTUALLY HAVE MONEY to put on the table – the ‘opportunity’ (i.e. persuasion) to buy vaccines and present ideas on how to distribute them.
    How’s that for the extreme admission of failure? Maybe Prayut should further persuade these people by giving them the ‘opportunity’ to replace the present governing regime and completely take over the running of the country. Yes, that would go down well with Prayut’s despairing people … 99% of them, probably.

  3. Toby Andrews

    Monday, April 26, 2021 at 11:59 am

    They should just requisition hotels. The government can do that, they are dictators after all . . .

  4. Billibob

    Monday, April 26, 2021 at 1:19 pm

    @davidpilkington, absolutely spot on, just proves this clown and his cronies have no direction or plan to mitigate this disaster that they have caused.

  5. Ray

    Monday, April 26, 2021 at 2:21 pm

    The Thai government does what many western governments did. Gradually implementing stricter rules and intelligent lock-downs. It is a balancing act between economic interests and keeping the health system intact. At the moment they already factor in loss of life. Just hope they don’t get situations like in India at the moment.

  6. Simon Small

    Monday, April 26, 2021 at 5:01 pm

    “The Thai government does what many western governments did.”

    That’s the problem, @ Ray.

    Pretty pointless trying to be popular when it’s never going to happen.

  7. Tiny Tim

    Monday, April 26, 2021 at 7:41 pm

    Isn’t this the same as the previous colour code but without the yellow and green?

    • Thaiger

      Tuesday, April 27, 2021 at 8:06 am

      By the way, THIS user isn’t ‘Tim’.

  8. Russell John Watts

    Monday, April 26, 2021 at 7:57 pm

    @Sydney B – unfortunately there are a limited number of vaccine manufacturers to supply vaccines for every country in the world and when you get 1 manufacturer (Johnson & Johnson) having problems with their vaccine and being withdrawn from the supply chain until last week when their vaccine was approved again and with the problems with some of the other vaccines (blood clots, etc) has made it hard for every country to stick with their vaccination timeframe. It is not only happening with Thailand.

  9. David Pilkington

    Monday, April 26, 2021 at 9:32 pm

    @Tiny Tim – Yes, of course, Tim. They must have wanted colours that all have that degree of menace, you know, like at the traffic lights when you must slow down or stop. Yellow and green, maybe, in these guys’ advanced way of thinking, were just too pretty, just not threatening enough.

  10. Ray

    Tuesday, April 27, 2021 at 4:56 am

    @Simon Small – It has nothing to do with popularity but with reality: how to motivate the population to give up freedom of movement and accept loss of income? Enforcement is potentially too big a problem. They simply don’t have the resources to control all disobedient citizens. If you look at what happened in many other countries you can see that only after mass casualties stricter measures were issued. Fear is the best motivator for most of us.

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