Connect with us

Coronavirus (Covid-19)

Thailand may offer free Covid vaccines for migrant workers covered by national social security program

Published

 on 

The Thai government is looking at offering free Covid‐19 vaccines to migrant workers who are covered under the nation’s social security program. The Thai Ministry of Labour is set to discuss the move with the Social Security Board. If approved, over 2.3 million migrant workers would be inoculated for free, costing around 3 billion baht. The Labour Minister says migrant manual labourers are vital to Thai industries and the economy, therefore, they should not be left out of the vaccination program.

Frontline medical personnel, people who have been working in close contact with the infected, elderly people, those suffering from congenital diseases and people in high-risk areas are to be the first recipients of the vaccines, which could be either from Sinovac or Astrazeneca. After the highrisk groups are inoculated, the general public will follow with some tourist heavy areas to see expat residents included in the vaccination programme.

The Labour Ministry also plans to set up a hospital exclusively for people covered by the social security programme, as well as a social security bank to help people under the social security programme.

The move to cover migrant workers comes after Thailand closed at least 7 natural borders with the neighouring country of Myanmar as thousands of Burmese people are expected to flee to Thailand following the military coup in Myanmar. The Thai immigration police chief says he estimates around 400,000 Burmese migrants are looking to enter Thailand. He says the bounty for human traffickers has increased due to the political situation in Myanmar.

Illegal migrants to Thailand have been accused of spreading the Covid virus as many allegedly snuck into the country undetected after bribing border patrol police officers. Those who illegally entered, skirted mandatory quarantines and testing. At least 33 police officers and other government officials were  investigated for their roles in the illegal smuggling of migrant workers into Thailand.

SOURCE: Thai PBS World

 

Get more from The Thaiger

Join the conversation and have your say on Thailand news published on The Thaiger.

Thaiger Talk is our new Thaiger Community where you can join the discussion on everything happening in Thailand right now.

Please note that articles are not posted to the forum instantly and can take up to 20 min before being visible. Click for more information and the Thaiger Talk Guidelines.

10 Comments

10 Comments

  1. Fred glue

    Thursday, March 4, 2021 at 1:49 pm

    May offer, C-19,,, so that’s a NO…

  2. Issan John

    Thursday, March 4, 2021 at 3:42 pm

    Why would it cost the government (or anyone) “around 3 billion baht” to vaccinate “2.3 million migrant workers”?

    Only yesterday the Thaiger reported that “the Thai government has approved a budget of 6.387 billion baht to procure an additional 35 million doses of Covid-19 vaccines.”

    Including admin costs of 700 million baht, with two doses each, that works out to 365 baht each while for migrant workers it’s 1,304 baht – that’s over 3.5 times the price!!!

  3. Nipral

    Thursday, March 4, 2021 at 3:45 pm

    Beforehand I suggest this sort-of-government secures vaccine supply for its population !!!

  4. Toby Andrews

    Thursday, March 4, 2021 at 9:22 pm

    Yes John, it seems a scam, but they are Thais!
    Face facts John. You are protecting lying cheating Thais. You are on the wrong side.

  5. Issan John

    Thursday, March 4, 2021 at 11:26 pm

    Not “protecting” anyone or on any “side”, Toby, hence my comment.

  6. Ian

    Friday, March 5, 2021 at 3:09 am

    Well that’s a first sitting on the fence ij but you still never knock the dictators shame on you day after day after day you just dont realise that you live as a asylum seeker year after year until theyve had enough of you on your 1yr visa thatsxwhy so so many farangs will never invest our fortunes in a country like this and this is so sad for the Thai people that money is not being invested ,I would gladly invest once this dictatorship goes until then I’ll keep my money invested in UK property’s not a mud hut in issan with a rice field that you can’t even farm cos your stuck on your commode daily spouting hatred to the west so sad

  7. brian mc

    Friday, March 5, 2021 at 6:34 am

    will this also apply to western workers who pay into the thai social welfare scheme, i wonder?

  8. Issan John

    Friday, March 5, 2021 at 1:26 pm

    “Western workers” don’t “pay into the thai social welfare scheme”, brian mc.

    Those on work permits pay into the Social SECURITY Scheme, just as legal migrant workers do.

    That’s not nit-picking as they’re two completely different schemes:

    Social welfare covers “welfare”, from the yellow card (hospital treatment), the blue card (Blue Flag, subsidised purchases) to allowances for the mentally handicapped, limited pensions, and the spate of recent Covid-related allowances and apps. They’re strictly for Thais – all Thais, as long as they’re in Thailand, regardless of where they live or are resident or if they’ve ever paid any income tax.

    Social Security mainly covers unemployment benefits, state pensions, and hospital treatment (non-yellow card). Only those who paid in to the Social Security Scheme, usually via income tax, are entitled to Social Security benefits – that excludes a lot of working-age Thais (as many as a third) but includes foreign workers, regardless of nationality, as long as they’re legal and pay tax.

    Two completely different systems.

    NEITHER is paying for the free vaccinations, for Thais or anyone else – these are funded from completely separate and specific government votes.

    So far this is ONLY for the first “set” of vaccinations (one or two jabs, depending on the vaccine) as nobody knows efficacy, duration, etc, yet, but in all probability they’ll continue to be free like polio and tetanus jabs (tetanus jabs are free in Thailand every ten years) for all Thais, unlike, say, ‘flu jabs which are charged for.

    The Social Security Board and Labour Ministry are involved not because they’d pay for any free jabs but only because it’s in Thailand’s interests to have as many as possible here vaccinated which the Labour Ministry are pointing out – particularly a couple of million migrant workers to avoid a repeat of Samut Sakhon-style outbreaks.

    Using those foreigners / non-Thais registered for Social Security, either as “normal”, legal migrant workers or under the recent amnesty is obviously the simplest way of registering eligibility for free vaccines, if approved, to avoid any foreigners (expats, farangs, Khmer, Burmese, or anyone else) just going to a Thai hospital this year, next year, or anytime and demanding a free vaccination.

    Foreigners working legally in Thailand registered under the Social Security scheme aren’t registered as “western workers” or “farangs” but just as foreigners and by nationality, so there’s no differentiation under the scheme between, say, a Philippino or Chinese working as a teacher or one working in a fish market.

    FWIW, Anutin has also recently said that the vaccine rollout (whenever it comes) will be for everyone “living in Thailand”, not just Thais, making your worries moot.

  9. Issan John

    Friday, March 5, 2021 at 3:41 pm

    FWIW, for those interested in the Thai Social Welfare system, rumour has it that the whole system of the Blue Card and assorted apps will be binned once the present “We Win” app finishes and everyone will have to re-apply and re-register.

    The old system was / is very unpopular as it was almost pot-luck who got some of it, with many having the Blue Card who were far better off than some who missed out, and some of the apps depending on your wi-fi connection speed / ISP rather than if you needed it or not.

  10. Ben

    Friday, March 5, 2021 at 8:51 pm

    If they want to re-invigorate the economy then they should vaccinate everyone without cost similar to the west. Don’t be pennywise and pound foolish. This is a good policy decision.

You must be logged in to post a comment Login

Leave a Reply

Ann Carter is an award-winning journalist from the United States with over 12 years experience in print and broadcast news. Her work has been featured in America, China and Thailand as she has worked internationally at major news stations as a writer and producer. Carter graduated from the Walter Williams Missouri School of Journalism in the USA.

Follow Thaiger by email:

Video10 hours ago

Thailand News Today | Thai Actress Forex 3D scammer released on bail after 3 months behind bars

Crime10 hours ago

Big Joke seizes Tuhao’s private jet in Hua Hin

Phuket10 hours ago

Phuket officials once again report finding no human trafficking on fishing boats

Sponsored17 hours ago

Go global with Upbit Thailand: Worldwide digital asset market in your hands

Thailand10 hours ago

South Korea increases quota of Thai workers next year

Tourism10 hours ago

Indian pervs arrested after harassing tourist in Mumbai

Vietnam11 hours ago

Province in Vietnam boosting tourism with its rich culture

Join the conversation on the Thaiger Talk forums today!
Thailand11 hours ago

Teen girl’s ID card request denied as she doesn’t look like her mother

Crime11 hours ago

Body of missing woman found tied to water pump in western Thailand

South Korea11 hours ago

NZ suitcase murders go to court

Thailand11 hours ago

Chinese gangs in Thailand take another hit as “Tony” falls

Pollution12 hours ago

Environmental police arrest 7 over illegal dumping in Bangkok

Crime12 hours ago

Pattaya Police warn city’s taxi riders to behave after sexual assault case

Press Room12 hours ago

Thai-Italian Business Summit highlights the importance of a shared vision

Thailand12 hours ago

Percentage of HIV infections rising among young Thais

Tourism13 hours ago

TAT launches luxury travel package to Thailand for rich South Korean tourists

Thailand1 year ago

Morning Top Stories Thailand | Police to end protests, Human Trafficking | September 14

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Thai Airways in rehab, All go for Songkran | March 4

Tourism2 years ago

Phuket’s nightlife. Yes, bars and clubs are still open | VIDEO

Phuket2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Covid passport talks, Thai Airways heads to court | March 2

Tourism2 years ago

Phuket Thai food treats you need to try | VIDEO

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Bars, pubs and restaurants ‘sort of’ back to normal | Feb 23

Tourism2 years ago

In search of Cat & Dog Cafés in Phuket Town | VIDEO

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Gambling crackdown, Seafood market to reopen, Vlogger challenge | Jan 21

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Covid testing for visas, Business impact, Vaccine approval | January 19

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Weekend Bangkok bombs, Thailand fires, Covid update | January 18

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Stray car on runway, Indonesian quake, 300 baht tourist fee | January 15

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Governor off respirator, sex-trafficking arrest, condo prices falling | January 14

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Chinese vaccine, Thailand ‘drug hub’, Covid update | January 13

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Bangkok may ease restrictions, Phuket bar curfew, Vaccine roll out | January 12

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Covid latest, Cockfights closed down, Bryde’s Whale beached | January 11

Trending