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Bangkok entertainment venues hit with temporary closure order amid rise in cases

Maya Taylor

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Bangkok entertainment venues hit with temporary closure order amid rise in cases | The Thaiger
PHOTO: Braden Jarvis on Unsplash
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The Bangkok Metropolitan Administration has ordered all entertainment venues in the capital to close until January 4, with the exception of bars and restaurants serving food and drinks. The establishments affected by the closure order include hostess bars, horseracing venues, cockfighting arenas, and massage parlours. Pubs and restaurants serving food and drinks only can remain open provided they observe strict hygiene measures and close by midnight.

The order comes amid a rise in cases and news that the Governor of the Covid-hit province of Samut Sakhon has also tested positive, meaning a number of officials who had close contact with him – including the Public Health Minister Anutin Charnvirakul – are currently self-isolating for 14 days. It’s understood Governor Verasak Vichitsangsiri has been admitted to hospital for observation, due to an underlying condition that may put him at increased risk from the virus.

Opas Karnkawinpong from the Department of Disease Control has urged the public to support the governor, a call echoed by PM Prayut Chan-o-cha and Minister Anutin, who have praised him for his hard work in attempting to control the virus outbreak in his province.

Meanwhile, the eastern province of Rayong has confirmed that one of the patients in its recent cluster of infections has died. It’s understood the 45 year old man had underlying health conditions. He tested positive for the virus on Sunday and subsequently developed breathing difficulties. He stopped breathing while being transported to hospital.

In a stark warning to the country, Taweesilp Visanuyothin from the Centre for Covid-19 Situation Administration, says cases could increase to thousands a day, or possibly even tens of thousands a day by the middle of January, if effective disease control measures are not implemented by provinces with high case numbers.

“If nothing is done, daily new cases could soar to 4 or 5 digits this month or by the middle of next month. The best solution is to refrain from socialising, and the curve will flatten.”

SOURCE: Bangkok Post

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6 Comments

6 Comments

  1. Avatar

    Alam

    Tuesday, December 29, 2020 at 10:20 am

    That’s a good measure have been taken by the authorities, wish that spreading will not reach to out of control.
    It’s time to do mass testing and possible much more spot testing.
    Need to find out the roots of infection resumed areas.

    • Avatar

      Issan John

      Tuesday, December 29, 2020 at 2:12 pm

      What would “mass testing” and “spot testing” achieve?

      They’re massively expensive and unless they cover the entire population (very, very few countries have tested even 25% of the population) and are repeated, for everybody, every two weeks, they can never be effective to identify carriers as the experts now realise – one of the many mistakes made by the West, such as not wearing masks.

      The only tests that give quick enough results are lateral flow tests, and these miss more than half the positive cases (51%) making them worse than useless as those who are positive but test negative will feel safe and take less precautions, as will those around them.

      What’s needed is accurate targeted testing, which is exactly what Thailand’s been doing – very successfully judging by the figures from the targeted groups in Samut Sakhon (high:44%, medium:23%, low:12%).

      If country-wide on-going monitoring is what you’re after, that’s already being done by testing all those admitted to hospitals across the country.

      So … what more could “mass testing” actually achieve, exactly?

  2. Avatar

    Fred glue

    Tuesday, December 29, 2020 at 11:03 am

    Covid-19 up, Thai baht up, taxi fares up, motor bike taxi fares up, bar fine up, hotel prise up, beer up,
    food up, me not up, Issan John up (set) Toby Andrews up ( too no good).
    I have solved the puzzle with two days spare in 2020. Issan John, & Toby Andrews are the same person….
    One person two identities…. you read what they write, and you will know for sure..???

    • Avatar

      Issan John

      Tuesday, December 29, 2020 at 2:14 pm

      … maybe a bit too much glue sniffing there, Fred …..

      • Avatar

        Fred glue

        Tuesday, December 29, 2020 at 2:39 pm

        Have a laugh John, you must have been something as when you we’re a baby sitting in a high chair.
        ??‍♂️??‍♂️

  3. Avatar

    Bill

    Tuesday, December 29, 2020 at 10:30 pm

    lmao, love people hating on the pseudo-intellectual IJ

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Tourism

Phuket lifts mandatory quarantine restrictions for ‘high risk’ arrivals. But were they ever applied?

The Thaiger

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Phuket lifts mandatory quarantine restrictions for ‘high risk’ arrivals. But were they ever applied? | The Thaiger

Culminating 2 weeks of mass confusion over the apparent mandatory self-quarantine for arrivals to Phuket from Bangkok and other high risk provinces, Phuket’s provincial communicable disease committee has agreed to lift the mandatory 14 day quarantine “to help boost the local economy hit by the Covid-19 pandemic”.

But for the vast majority of arrivals from Bangkok (DMK and BKK) to Phuket there wasn’t even any mention of quarantine. Over the past 2 weeks, since Phuket’s Governor released a 3 page announcement about new restrictions for the island, people have mostly been coming and going as usual. The only additional impediments were all arrivees having to download and fill in the Mor Chana app and registering with gophuget.com.

In 2 weeks not a single person has reported to The Thaiger that they had been forced to self-quarantine. Last night, when checking in at Suvarnabhumi airport for a Thai VietJet flight to Phuket, the person at the Check-In counter told the passenger (we’ll call them Mic to protect their identity) they would have to serve 14 days in state quarantine upon arrival in Phuket. Mic, surprised, asked for some sort of confirmation of this from airline management or information from the Phuket Provisional officials. None was forthcoming. Nothing more was said or communicated to the passengers.

When the plane landed in Phuket officials checked that passengers had completed the Mor Chana app and scanned their phones after they’d completed the gophuget.com registration. And that was it. No mention of quarantine.

The situation has been repeated by other Thaiger staff over the past 2 weeks as well, but without any mention of quarantine during the check-in or boarding procedures with various airlines. In all cases they flew from Suvarnabhumi or Don Mueang airports.

Phuket’s Governor Narong Woonciew says the decision to ease the Covid-19 restrictions for visitors followed calls from the business community seeking to lure visitors to Phuket. (The Thaiger wonders if any of these officials had actually travelled over the past 2 weeks)

Local businesses met with provincial authorities on Friday proposing an end to the mandatory quarantine period “for people travelling from certain high-risk areas” in the hope of “stimulating the tourism industry”. The proposal was less about stimulating and more about raising the industry from its current flatline.

But whatever mandatory quarantine they were asking to be lifted appears to be have been, at best, loosely applied anyway.

Phuket has has a triple hit. The first when the borders were closed in April and the international airport closed. The second was when December arrived, the start of the busy tourist high-season. The third was the new restrictions added 2 weeks ago in response to the 2nd wave of clusters that started on December 20, tripling the total number of Covid infections in the country in just over a month.

According to Bangkok Post, Sarayuth Mallum, president of the Phuket travel industry council, says… “strict disease control measures remain necessary to protect local people and tourists from contracting the virus”.

Somehow, the mandatory quarantine requirement instructions never reached the airport officials. But, for now anyway, the “restrictions” have been lifted anyway. What was you experience arriving in Phuket over the past week? Were you asked to conduct a mandatory 14 day self-quarantine?

In the meantime the struggling domestic airlines have been forced to massively cancel or reschedule flights. Over the past 2 days most airlines only had 1 or 2 flights to and from Phuket and Bangkok, down from the 4 – 10 daily flights some airlines were offering.

More about the Mor Chana App here…

More about the direct effects on the island of Phuket…

SOURCE: Bangkok Post

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Bangkok

Courteous thief apologises to Bangkok convenience store: Sorry I’ve a kid

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Courteous thief apologises to Bangkok convenience store: Sorry I’ve a kid | The Thaiger
PHOTO: Sanook

A young man armed with a knife allegedly robbed a convenience store in Ladprao district of Bangkok, stealing 1,800 baht. Before fleeing on a motorcycle, he apologised to the staff, saying “Sorry. I’ve a kid”.

It’s really hard to find a thief with good manners these days.

The female staff who was in the store when the man came in told the reporter that she saw the man in a cream shirt with short sleeves, walking in the store and carrying a bag. He suddenly pointed the knife to threaten the staff for money. The terrified staff walked to the cashier counter and gave him money.

After checking CCTV cameras, police say the thief is between 25-30 of his age, and was not wearing a face mask. He was seen parking his motorcycle in front of the store before entering. He appeared to be carrying what looked like a fruit packing knife. The police are now tracking him down.

SOURCE: Thai Visa| Sanook

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Thailand

Efficacy of Covid-19 vaccines will drop during mass inoculations: Thai virologist

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Efficacy of Covid-19 vaccines will drop during mass inoculations: Thai virologist | The Thaiger
PHOTO: Siam Rath

Thai virologist Dr. Yong Poovorawan from Chulalongkorn University, has spoken about claims that the efficacy of every vaccine available today, including Covid-19 vaccines, tend to lower after being used in mass inoculations, compared to the findings from the laboratory during human testing trials.

He recommends that people should not rely solely on the vaccines alone because uncertainty will remain during the roll out phase of the new inoculations.

“The best way to protect themselves is to practice basic safety standards as we usually do today… wearing face masks all the time when going outside and in crowded venues, regularly washing hands, and maintain social distancing.”

On his Facebook page, Dr. Young cited the case of Hepatitis B vaccines that claimed between 94-95% efficacy. But after use on mass populations, its efficacy dropped to about 80%. He believes this trend will be the same as Covid-19 vaccines.

“Although the manufacturers claim the vaccines’ high efficacy, that is just the laboratory results. In practice, several variables may cause lower effectiveness of the vaccines.”

He also says that the real effectiveness of Covid-19 vaccines, both the American from Pfizer and the Chinese from Sinopharm will be known soon after the populations of Israel and UAE have been inoculated in large numbers already.

SOURCE: Thai PBS World

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