Thailand

DDC forecasts potential Covid-19 scenarios amid tourism restart

Covid-19 screening at Bangkok's Suvarnabhumi Airport (October 2021) | Photo courtesy of PR Bangkok

Ahead of next week’s reopening of Thailand’s international borders and the relaxing of quarantine requirements, the Department of Disease Control has provided a rundown of 3 potential Covid-19 scenarios facing the nation. The scenarios – categorised as “green”, “orange” and “grey” – respectively outline the risk of the virus spreading locally against the backdrop of the tourism restart, according to a range of factors.

Under the DDC’s modelling, the best-case scenario is the green scenario, with Nation Thailand reporting Dr Chawetsan Namwat, DDC emergency disease and health hazards control division director, as stating that under this scenario the chance of virus spreading from an infected patient to another person was lowered by 25% comparing to the pre-lockdown period. He said this would see daily infections gradually decrease to around 5,000 people per day.

“To reach this result, the strict Covid-19 measures must be employed while the vaccination rate from October to December must meet the target.”

The orange scenario, meanwhile, would see the chance of the virus spreading reduced by 15% compared to pre-lockdown. Dr Chawetsan said this would result in a slightly reduced daily infection rate, achievable by closing high-risk venues and banning public assembly and alcoholic beverages in restaurants, with the vaccination rate from October through to December also needing to meet the target.

Under the grey scenario, in which the vaccination rate from October to December misses its target, there would be a rise in the infection rate to the same level as pre-lockdown, with daily infections potentially reaching 10,000 people. Dr Chawetsan also pointed to infection numbers as not being the only factor in determining the severity of the outbreak, with the readiness of the public health system in accommodating Covid-19 patients also needing to be taken into account.

SOURCE: Nation Thailand

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