Thai health officials predict daily case count of 40,000 – 50,000 by mid-April

PHOTO: Centre for Covid-19 Situation Administration

The Department of Disease Control says Thailand’s daily new Covid cases could reach between 40,000 and 50,000 by the middle of next month. Health officials warn that infections could even rise to 100,000 if current restrictions are eased.

According to a Thai PBS World report, officials have called for strict adherence to Level 4 restrictions, particularly in restaurants, bars, and other venues where there are large gatherings. The DDC says if restrictions are strictly complied with, cases could peak at about 20,000 a day. If the country has to move to a Level 5 alert, this would involve re-introducing a curfew.

Yesterday, Thailand reported 23,618 new infections, which was a drop on Saturday’s high of 25,615. However, 42,138 people tested positive through antigen tests in the last 24 hours, which represents a new high. Bangkok yesterday reported 2,779 new cases from PCR testing. The capital currently has 101,172 patients in home isolation and 26,601 in community isolation facilities.

Meanwhile, in order to ease the pressure on Bangkok’s outpatient facilities, the Public Health Ministry has enlisted the help of 14 hospitals in surrounding provinces. Public Permanent Secretary Dr. Kiattibhoom Vongrachit says the number of staff manning the 1330 hotline run by the National Health Security Office has been increased to 700. However, those answering calls are still struggling with the volume, which reached 70,300 calls on Wednesday. This means many calls are going unanswered or callers are on hold for a long time.

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To address the issue, Kiattibhoom says a number of hospitals in the surrounding provinces are being enlisted to offer outpatient services for up to 18,650 patients a day. It’s understood that most have tested positive through antigen tests.

SOURCE: Thai PBS World

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