Connect with us

Phuket

Precarious Phuket: open internationally, closed domestically

Published

 on 

FILE PHOTO: Entry into Phuket is 2 different worlds depending if you are domestic or international.

Phuket has become like one island but 2 different worlds, depending on your vantage point. A look at the news over the past few days has been a dizzying mix of the Phuket Sandbox pushing forward, some successes in statistically low Covid-19 infection and death, especially compared to the rest of Thailand, a green light for the Sandbox to continue despite obstacles, and the island sealing off to outsiders.

Announcements regarding the Sandbox being allowed to continue under close supervision came within hours of government orders essentially banning all domestic travel to the island. Now, your chances of travelling to Phuket are very much dependent on whether you are an international traveller or a domestic one.

Last night, Phuket Governor Narong Woonciew declared the sealing of Phuket province from all domestic entry beginning August 3. Exceptions will be made for a few circumstances, mainly transporting necessities like medical supplies and emergency patients, food, agriculture and livestock, gas, money, paper goods, and constructions supplies, as well as people with schooling on the island, flight tickets for approved travel, vaccine appointments, court appointments, and necessary government officials.

Even those who are exempted are still required to show proof of vaccination and a recent RT-PCR or Rapid Antigen test at the entry checkpoints. These requirements match those for international travellers, but the other limitations on who can come are much more lenient.

The Phuket Sandbox has been feeling the pressure as the rolling 7-day Covid-19 infection total is 148, well over the self-imposed threshold of 90 per week that would trigger a re-evaluation of the programme. But with only 30 of those cases being from international Sandbox travellers out of 12,395 total arrivals, the infection rate for international travellers is 0.2% and officials say the Sandbox can continue on. The Department of Disease Control says they need to carefully observe the situation for 2 weeks to see if the closure of the Sandbox program is needed while domestic travel is already closing.

Phuket’s healthcare and hospital system are still in strong shape with only 36% of resources in use currently. No cases have required ventilators so far. Some of the 148 cases in the past week were Phuket residents infected outside the province and returning home for medical treatment. High-risk infections were moved to local quarantine facilities.

Phuket currently has 450 rooms ready for isolation and quarantine, but each tambon in Phuket was asked to make contingency plans in case of a surge to identify rooms that could be converted to provide up to 1,500 quarantine rooms.  800 work camps in Phuket have been sealed as a precaution as well, though no infections have been reported. Local officials are hoping infections will ease but preparing for a surge in an attempt to keep the Sandbox afloat.

SOURCE: Bangkok Post

For more information on how to get into Thailand during the pandemic, CLICK HERE

 

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.

Neill is a journalist from the United States with 10+ years broadcasting experience and national news and magazine publications. He graduated with a degree in journalism and communications from the University of California and has been living in Thailand since 2014.

Follow Thaiger by email:

Malaysia13 hours ago

Malaysian beauty salon gets makeover as dentistry school

Thailand14 hours ago

Northern floods tragedy – Monks unable to help

Tourism15 hours ago

Xi’s Bangkok APEC trip to open tourist floodgates

Pattaya15 hours ago

Police to curb Pattaya Beach drinking after student gun fight

Phuket16 hours ago

9th and 10th monkeypox infections found in Phuket

Coronavirus (Covid-19)17 hours ago

Face masks still required on public transport, in cinemas

Join the conversation on the Thaiger Talk forums today!
Cannabis News18 hours ago

Pattaya man attacked at gunpoint for selling cannabis

Crime18 hours ago

Police seize 60 suspects in online ‘ghost guns’ sting

Thailand18 hours ago

Bangkok Secret Nightlife – Bangkok Red Light District Secret Museum

Coronation19 hours ago

King Charles III debuts on UK coins

Politics1 day ago

Vladimir Putin officially annexed four parts of Ukraine

Transport2 days ago

Phuket Airport officials pulled tourist from van, insisted they use airport taxi

Thailand2 days ago

Thailand’s strange laws – 10 strange laws in Thailand

Politics2 days ago

The long goodbye – Which way now for PM Prayut?

Pattaya2 days ago

Pattaya Police Chief cleared of vice slurs, back on duty

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