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UPDATE: More cases in Thailand, the Rayong cluster and 3 new field hospitals

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UPDATE: More cases in Thailand, the Rayong cluster and 3 new field hospitals | The Thaiger
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Cases continue to pop up around the country as the cluster, identified 10 days ago in Samut Sakhon, south west of Bangkok, have spread. Yesterday the CCSA provided updates on the new field hospitals in Samut Sakhon, the Rayong cluster and new cases emerging in the capital.

The Samut Sakhon provincial stadium in the main city district is being converted into a field hospital with a capacity of over 500 beds. The facility is being fast-tracked to provide Covid-19-related services for some of the 4,000 Burmese migrant workers currently in quarantine in the seafood market area, Talad Klang Kung, the hotzone in the current outbreak which has now affected some 38 provinces across the country. The original 14 day quarantine expires today.

The huge marquees include 24 toilets, resting areas with TV, free WiFi and food. The facilities are under 24/7 surveillance of CCTV. Doctors looking after the temporary field hospitals will be using telemedicine to check on any patients who develop symptoms, before deciding whether to send them to a hospital. The workers are being expected to stay at the temporary field hospital for a full 14 day quarantine period.

The provincial governor say the Samut Sakhon is now ready to receive patients says he is confident the facilities are “safe and will contain the outbreak”. The governor announced that 3 field hospitals are being established.

“The field hospital is in front of my house so I am confident that it is 1,000% safe.”

In the first days after the cluster was detected, 44% of the people tested were positive for Covid-19 infection. That percentage has now dropped to 12% as people continue to be tested.

There is now over 1,200 cases from the Samut Sakhon cluster which originated in the province’s busy seafood markets.

Local Samut Sakhonians delayed the construction of the field hospital as they protested their fears of maintaining a specialist Covid-19 hospital in the middle of a business and residential area.

Meanwhile the CCSA admits that the current outbreak, which is now affecting 38 provinces in the Kingdom, is “more serious” than the first wave that hit Thailand in late March and April when the government imposed an emergency decree and strict lockdown provisions.

A spokesperson for the CCSA , Dr. Taweesilp Visanuyothin, yesterday urged the public “to comply with disease control measures so drastic measures would not be needed.”

“The number of infections jumped by over a thousand over a short period of time, suggesting the spread of the virus this time is far more serious than the first wave.”A total of 121 new Covid-19 cases were reported yesterday… 94 were local transmissions. The number of accumulated cases in Thailand is now 6,141.

But Dr Taweesilp also acknowledged that health officials are much better prepared with more knowledge and treatment options than in the early days when the coronavirus reached Thailand.

“If we cooperate, there will be no need to enforce the law, impose lockdowns or a curfew.”

The spokesperson also discussed the gambling cluster in Rayong and berated the gamblers for “withholding information about their activities”.

The new hub of Covid-19 infections was discovered in Rayong, 40 kilometres south of Pattaya, linked to a local illegal casino in the main city district. 85 cases have been identified there since Saturday.

“Others are affected. The entire province is affected,” Dr Taweesilp told Bangkok Post.

The Thai PM Prayut Chan-o-cha is urging the public to use the “Mor Chana” application to track Covid-19 cases around them, and identify their location so that tracking and tracing can be quick and effective if a local outbreak is identified near you. “The app provides data to the Department of Disease Control to boost its efforts to curb the spread of the virus.”

In Bangkok, 58 cases have been identified in the capital in the week between December 20 – 26. 16 more people tested positive yesterday in Bangkok.

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14 Comments

14 Comments

  1. Avatar

    Rip255

    Monday, December 28, 2020 at 11:34 am

    Its nationwide and these reported numbers are a drop in the ocean compared to the real volume of cases. Lets not kid ourselves

    Widespread vaccination is at least 12 months away for Thailand so there are 2 choices…

    1) Allow society to go ahead and give people the opportunity to put food on the table and accept there will be some deaths

    2) Cower in fear for another 12 months and wait for society to crumble, and accept there will be some deaths, Widespread poverty, suicides and mental health issues and a return to third world status.

    • Avatar

      Issan John

      Monday, December 28, 2020 at 11:46 am

      The only “kidding” is from people like you, who aren’t here, talking what is very easily verifiable as absolute rubbish based on the absurd idea that “we’re in the shit, we’re Westerners, so everyone else must be in the shit too”.

      • Avatar

        Mike

        Wednesday, December 30, 2020 at 10:31 pm

        “we’re in the shit, we’re Westerners, so everyone else must be in the shit too”.

        Who’s idea was that? No one said that – you made it up. I assume this statement is in inverted commas because you think you’re quoting someone? Who?

        You always argue the toss in this way. Typical.

  2. Avatar

    Toby Andrews

    Monday, December 28, 2020 at 11:49 am

    Well as I see most of them have no symptoms, I would think the Burmese are glad of a nice long rest in quarantine at government expense.
    The testers will be making money.
    The medics will be making money. The caterers will be making money.
    The hospitals will make money if the testers find them patients, even if fraudulent.
    The government will be glad of new excuses to continue their emergency powers.
    Everyone’s happy, except the businesses that are losing their cheap labour.
    Has there been a death yet? Naw,
    I doubt their will be unless they find a old person dying and put his death down to covid.

    • Avatar

      s2k

      Monday, December 28, 2020 at 2:57 pm

      you have personally seen them?

    • Avatar

      colin

      Tuesday, December 29, 2020 at 4:53 pm

      Yes, there has been a death in Rayong today and not an old person. How do you know they have no symptoms?

  3. Avatar

    Issan John

    Monday, December 28, 2020 at 11:56 am

    Shame on those who protested about the field hospitals, fortunately ineffectively, and on anyone not willing to play their full part in protecting the country and everyone here, but …

    … credit where it’s due, and well done to the CCSA and Dr. Taweesilp Visanuyothin for being honest about the outbreak, and to the provincial governor for acting quickly and humanely – and, hopefully, effectively.

  4. Avatar

    Manu

    Monday, December 28, 2020 at 1:17 pm

    “But Dr Taweesilp also acknowledged that health officials are much better prepared with more knowledge and treatment options than in the early days when the coronavirus reached Thailand.”

    Well, bless you Thailand!! NO, I am not being sacastic here, quite the opposite…

    While everyone seems to have only the word vaccin in mind, I have been interested for a long while more about the word treatment. Last time I mentioned this in a comment, with names and sources (but no links), my comment was not published. So TheThaiger, is it ok if I mention one treatment that is indeed being used by Thailand?? (I finally found some info about it : source: WHO) One of the protocoles used in Thailand is the combination of hydroxychloroquine + azithromycin. This treatment has proven very successul in many coutries with now over 180 studies showing the excellent results: a huge reduction on people sent to intensive care and an extremely low death rate. I found 2 sources listing the drugs used for treatments in Thailand, and while back in March Chloroquine was mentioned, the second one updated in November adds azithromycin in combination with HydroxiChloroquine – so the Thai scientists have judged the 180+ studies being relevant while the west has been undermining (that’s an understatement) this (very cheap)treatment since the beggining while promoting strongly Remdesevir (no need to add anything again here about that SCANDAL!!). Now I am very conviced that the death rate in this second wave will be very very low cause people will be treated at early stage with a treament that works (and it works only at the early stage of the disease) – we certainly have FAR more info now about this treatement than we have about the vaccin given currently in the UK, country that is obviously not treating patients at early stage with this protocole : perhaps this explains that…???

    • Avatar

      Issan John

      Monday, December 28, 2020 at 2:37 pm

      Manu, I’m as dubious as you are about Remdesivir, which was very much a cure looking for a disease to treat, but I’ve got similar doubts about Chloroquine as the UK trials which involved tens of thousands of infected patients concluded that it was “useless” for treating Covid, while the “Recovery” trials found that dexamethasone was actually far better.

      If you’re following developments in treatments rather than vaccines, AstraZeneca’s Storm Chaser seems to be the recent leader by a long way, and given the cost of their vaccine it’s likely to be cheap too.

      • Avatar

        Niko

        Monday, December 28, 2020 at 5:00 pm

        I have watched all the fanfare around the miracle vaccines manly the pfizer and moderna with some suspicion because i remenber quite well a few months ago when this redemsivir was presented as a major breakthroug and even dr fauci siting on a couch and claiming they were finaly making headway.

        I though let see in a few months and well it seems is not working because the hospitals are still full.

        The only way we going to know if the vaccines work is if the hospitals get empty that´s what politians really care about

      • Avatar

        Manu

        Monday, December 28, 2020 at 6:59 pm

        Not much time to develop but the recovery trials are as much of a scandal as the study published in the lancet back in may (a huge fraud, a scandal) as not only they gave far more highest doses abd they includes mostly people in the later phase of the disease and the scientists advocating this treatment are very clear that it works only when treated early. As for vaccines, yes this one sounds the “safer” one, I have nothing against vaccines in principle, however I am really starting to open my eyes in the fact that no research and money are being put in trying to find proper treatments for Covid using the many old molecules we have already available and we know so much about that are cheap so in no interest for big pharmaceutical corporations, but every resources in vaccines that generates an amount of money that is so huge, you just cannot help to question yourselves about motives. There is another cheap molecule that is also the subject of success according to the many scientists that have been using it for months, that works even better than hydrixochloroquine with many studies and even 11 randomised trials , his biggest advocate dr kory did a fantastic appeal in the us senate about 10 days ago. Still no mainstream media is talking about it nor it is taken seriously. This and many other things, and I am certainly not a completist and only started to question things in about July. All I can say is that something not right is happening and I do not know what it is. One thing certain right now is that I will definitely not get the Pfizer vaccine and if I happen to catch Covid19 in Thailand, I will be more than happy to blue treated early with that protocol (not hidryxochloroquine only, but combined with azithromicin

        • Avatar

          John Brown

          Monday, December 28, 2020 at 11:29 pm

          Thaiger, is there an embargo on discussing repurposed drugs that have demonstrated efficacy as both a prophylaxis and therapeutic agent in clinical trials? Or is it only mention of those which have won Nobel prizes which will be censored? If so, why should discussion of an anti-parasitic which has been used safely worldwide for decades in several billion doses be prohibited when we can freely discuss relatively new and alarmingly hepatoxic and teratogenic antivirals? I admit I am a bit puzzled here, and clarification of the moderation standards would be useful.

      • Avatar

        John Brown

        Monday, December 28, 2020 at 9:10 pm

        Remdesivir (along with favipiravir which we spent far too much on in a political deal) has never worked, HCQ also useless at any time other than pre-infection (and questionable even then), antibody therapies like “Storm Chaser” will just as quickly lose efficacy as they will promote mutations, which is fast. While antivirals may be part of the therapeutic and even prophylactic solution, adaptive immunity targets will be more a part of the growing problem. NPI’s are the only safe bet barring statistically significant persistence or latency, but even still they’re our best hope. We just need to implement them correctly, which includes subsidising their cost universally, to both keep down administrative burdens and avoid holes in the safety net which could get big enough to ruin the effort and send us back to square one.

        If we can’t control our borders, both internal and international, this isn’t going to work, it really is that simple. Otherwise all we need is ~5-8 weeks to go from any n cases to negligible given current cycle times, because it’s exponential in both directions. The science isn’t hard but leaders who understand are rare.

        • Avatar

          Issan John

          Tuesday, December 29, 2020 at 9:33 pm

          I think you’re being premature about Storm Chaser, as from what I’ve read it’s not designed to provide long term protection so it doesn’t matter if it “quickly lose efficacy” as long as it provides an immediate (if short term) cure.

          AFAIK it’s two jabs, then once negative it can be followed by the normal two jabs for a longer term vaccination.

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Coronavirus (Covid-19)

Wuhan remembers Covid-19 lockdown on 1 year anniversary

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Wuhan remembers Covid-19 lockdown on 1 year anniversary | The Thaiger

Wuhan is remembering the Covid-19 lockdown that 11 million residents endured on today’s 1 year anniversary. The 76 day lockdown on January 23, 2020 saw public transportation shut down by 10am and a ban on anyone exiting the city, unless they were given special permission. In a city the size of London, locking down painted an eerily quiet landscape.

But such an anniversary today has been met with silence by Beijing as no lockdown commemorations have been planned, almost as though the lockdown never happened. A commentary in the Beijing News professed “mixed feelings,” praising the aggressive lockdown as a model for the world, while noting Wuhan’s sacrifices and the looming virus threat.

“We must not lose the hard-won results of the epidemic to negligence, and must not let the epidemic rebound. Pay tribute to Wuhan. Pay tribute to the strong and fearless Chinese people!”

Despite the government’s reluctance to acknowledge the anniversary, Wuhan’s lockdown ordeals remain fresh the memories of Chinese people, especially as localised Covid-19 clusters have spread across China. Such popups in Covid cases have prompted Beijing to implement mass testing and lockdowns in other areas.

76 year old Huang Genben, is one of those who remembers. He says he spent over 2 months in a hospital last year fighting the virus as he spit up blood, expecting to die, but agrees that such a lockdown was necessary.

“When I closed my eyes at night I didn’t know if I would open them again.”

“We can tell from the results that the policy of the government was correct, the cooperation of Wuhan citizens was correct. I feel pain seeing the epidemic all over the world.”

Today, the streets of Wuhan seem to be the stark opposite of what it was 1 year ago, with elderly dancers spinning in parks and crowded bars selling “Wuhan Stay Strong” craft beer, while the rest of the world is still dealing with the fallout of the pandemic.

But 58 year old street vendor Xu Jiajun, contradicts the somewhat merry street scenes as he says things have changed since the pandemic began.

“The situation is not good. I don’t have a stable income like I did before.”

As the Covid-19 virus is generally believed to have spread from a Wuhan wet market where exotic animals were sold as food, World Health Organisation experts are almost finished with a 2 week quarantine in Wuhan where they plan to investigate the coronavirus’ origins.

Worldwide, the virus has been responsible for killing at least 2 million people, but in China authorities have reported fewer than 5,000 deaths, with the vast majority coming from Wuhan when the pandemic most probably originated.

SOURCE: The Phuket News

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Coronavirus (Covid-19)

Patong, Phuket Town to fund residents’ vaccines

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Patong, Phuket Town to fund residents’ vaccines | The Thaiger

Patong and Phuket Town are planning to fund registered residents’ Covid-19 vaccines, Thai and foreign, with the hope to speed up the inoculation process without waiting for the national government. The mayors of both cities say they have already allocated the funds to move forward with purchasing the vaccines after the government approves which ones may be used.

Like any other municipality in Thailand, the Covid-19 vaccine must be acquired from the Ministry of Public Health. Thanit Sermkaew, Chief of the Phuket Provincial Public Health Office, says his office had yet to receive the news on how many doses of the vaccine Phuket could receive or in which order to vaccinate people.

“I don’t want to wait in the queue to get the vaccine budget. Chalong people deserve to receive vaccines. They do not need to pay.”

Mayor Samran of Chalong confirmed that the Covid vaccines will be freely available to all people registered as living in Chalong Subdistrict, regardless whether the resident is Thai or foreign.

“There are about 20,000 to 30,000 people in Chalong. This includes everyone: Thais, migrant workers and other foreigners registered as living in Chalong, such as retirees and foreigners staying here for other reasons. They will all receive the vaccine.”

Phuket City Mayor Somjai Suwansupana has also confirmed that Phuket City Municipality will also administer free vaccines to the over 79,000 people living in Phuket Town. But he says only people who were registered as living in the city limits at the end of December would be eligible to receive the free vaccines. Chalermluck Kebsup, Mayor of Patong, is also following suit by offering free vaccines to registered residents.

“We deserve to get the vaccine quickly because Phuket is a tourism province, our people depend on tourism.”

It has been 26 days since Phuket had any positive cases of Covid-19, but Chalermluck says a vaccine will curb worries of Covid spreading.

“The vaccine is our hope in stopping this fear. If local residents receive the vaccine as quickly as possible, I think people will be more confident in receiving domestic tourists. Then businesses can run.”

Phuket Chamber of Commerce President Thanusak Phungdet is praising the move by local municipalities to plan free vaccinations.

“Provinces that rely on tourism should receive the vaccine before other provinces. For Phuket, it will create more confidence among tourists wanting to travel here. Then businesses can start operating again, and that will help local people earn incomes that they can live on.”

SOURCE: The Phuket News

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ASQ + Vaccine in Thailand proposal gets the thumbs down

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ASQ + Vaccine in Thailand proposal gets the thumbs down | The Thaiger

OPINION

A spokesperson from a Thai tourism association came up with the “cunning idea” yesterday to propose a ASQ + Vaccine package to travellers and tourists. So not only do you get your 14 day mandatory quarantine at an expensive hotel in Bangkok, the opportunity to submit copious amounts of paperwork and drill through the red tape. NOW you get a jab of Covid-19 vaccine included. All for the all time low starting price of 150,000 baht. Read the original story HERE.

Bargain!

Of course The Thaiger readers and viewers raced to congratulate the rocket scientist who came up with this brilliant piece of tourist marketing. Suffice to say, it’s dead in the water even before the ambulance arrives…

Ron Rossington
Until the ditch the 14 day quarantine and end the ineffective lockdowns, Thailand will not get the tourist numbers they are in dire need of to stabilize the economy.

k tara
Another brilliant idea for tourists which will be dead on arrival. Do these people live in reality.

rickdangr
Tourism will NOT return until the 14 day quarantine is gone! Get the vaccine out to the Thai people, then start with allowing tourists in without quarantine, that have been vaccinated. This would be a smart way to open, and to get it done by April 1st, before the Songkran holiday.

Paul D
Hello Thaiger Team, the story with regards to vaccinations tagging on with the STV, seems to me as another of Thailands false hope stories. But I am sure the Government powers may have overlooked the strong suggestions many Airlines have voiced, “that no traveller will be allowed on the flight unless they have proof of vaccinations”. Even this is not 100% at this point. Some countries will not even allow their citizens to leave right now. I think the Thai government, even though are doing as much as they can right now, needs to not provide false hope to travellers at this point.

Energy3
another gimmick by thai officials – free vaccine with STV – sounds like you’re getting a happy meal with a free toy
Sai Sai
This is ridiculous!

Tyler Durden
These Thai officials need to wake up. The reason us tourists aren’t coming to Thailand is because of the 2 week quarantine, adding extra vaccination costs on top of an already expensive STV visa ain’t gonna get me over there that’s for sure. If these officials don’t drop the 2 week quarantine, there once popular visitors are going to be popular visitors elsewhere, as already I know many people traveling to South America.

And this gentlemen, J German, who went to all the trouble for little return…

I went to Bangkok in Dec. for the holidays. I did my 2 weeks of ASQ during which the shrimp market outbreak started. By the time I got out of quarantine, I had 4 nights of fun, but it was far from what the scene once was. I had a fun NYE, then it all got shut down. I went there to be in a country that was “safer” and not on lockdown. I lost that bet. Then Taiwan closed to international flights, cancelling my trip home. I got on the next plane to the US, leaving several weeks early so as not to get stuck there with nothing to do. My advice is, don’t waste your money or your time (like I did) until vaccinations are widely distributed and quarantines are over.

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