Passengers from Chiang Rai-Bangkok flights considered “low-risk”

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Passengers from 4 flights between Chiang Rai and Bangkok are considered at “low risk” of contracting Covid-19, according to a statement from the Public Health Ministry. However, the ministry is asking all passengers to self-monitor for the next 14 days, and report symptoms such as fever, a cough, sore throat, or a loss of taste or smell immediately.

The 4 flights are: Nok Air flight DD8717 on November 28, Thai Lion Air flight SL533 on November 29, Thai Smile WE137 on November 29, and Thai Lion Air SL545 on November 30.

The ministry says a 26 year old woman from Thai Smile flight WE137 on November 29 has tested positive for Covid-19, with 10 others considered, “high-risk”, and 68 designated, “low-risk”. A 30 year old man from Thai Lion Air flight SL545 on November 30 has also tested positive for the virus, with 24 people who had close contact with him considered, “high risk”. Both the woman and man had recently returned from Myanmar.

The Health Ministry’s statement follows news that a 51 year old woman from the central province of Sing Buri tested positive for Covid-19 after arriving in Chiang Rai through Mae Fah Luang airport. The airport has been used by repatriating Thai nationals returning from the 1G1-7 Hotel in the Burmese border town of Tachileik.

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The hotel hit the headlines last week, amid claims that it operates as a centre for prostitution, with around 180 Thais thought to be working there. The hotel has also become a hotspot for Covid-19 infections, prompting many of those employed there to flee, returning to Thailand through both legal and illegal channels. Most of the returning Thai nationals have tested positive for Covid-19 since their return, with a total of 38 cases detected, most of which are in young women.

The Department of Disease Control says there is no need to panic, adding that, while passengers from the 4 flights in question should be okay, they must monitor their health over the next 14 days, as well as wearing face masks and practicing social distancing, even at home.

Dr. Sophon Iamsirithaworn says it’s possible the Sing Buri patient contracted the virus at Mae Fah Luang airport, pointing out that she was not wearing her mask correctly at all times. Her case is considered one of local transmission as she has no history of overseas travel. Since testing positive on December 3, 37 people who were in close contact with her have been tested. 32 have returned negative results, while the remaining 5 are waiting for their results.

SOURCE: Bangkok Post

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