Swine Flu: Phuket facing further downturns in tourism

BANGKOK / PHUKET: A Bangkok school will today be partially closed for three days after an 11-year-old boy came down with type-A (H1N1) influenza in what is the second known case of local infection in Thailand. Thirteen of his classmates have also developed a fever.

Deputy Public Health Minister Manit Nopamornbodi said the Bangkok student, whose name was withheld, had no record of traveling abroad.

Dr Passakorn Akarasewee, director of the Disease Control Department’s Bureau of Epidemiology, said the 11-year-old boy was the second case of domestic infection.

The first transmission of the new flu within Thailand occurred when a 19-year-old boy caught the virus from his mother after she returned from the US.

A Hong Kong man on holiday in Phuket from last Thursday until Monday was also reported, in the Phuket Gazette Online yesterday, as having fallen sick with the virus upon returning home.

“The number of confirmed cases of swine flu in Thailand is now expected to rise daily,” Dr Prat Boonyawongewirot, permanent secretary for the Public Health Ministry, said yesterday.

In the tourist city of Pattaya, authorities were asked to help control the spread of the new flu after two Taiwanese visitors were suspected of having contracted the virus while staying there.

Deputy Pattaya mayor Veerawat Khakhay said some Taiwanese tour companies are planning to cancel their programs to Thailand as a result of the latest news, adding that over 1,000 foreign visitors are due to attend an international conference in Pattaya shortly.

Thailand has to boost the confidence of tourists or their numbers will drop further,he said.

As of yesterday, the number of patients infected by type-A inluenza in Thailand had risen to 16, excluding suspected cases of foreign visitors who are no longer in the country.

— Nation / Gazette News Pool

Phuket News

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Archiving articles from the Phuket Gazette circa 1998 - 2017. View the Phuket Gazette online archive and Digital Gazette PDF Prints.

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