BANGKOK – The Ministry of Public Health has indicated that the COVID-19 situation in Thailand is improving, with 65 provinces reporting no new cases in a month. However, the situation is not stable enough, as the government continues to screen people returning from abroad and is proactive in testing suspected cases.
The Deputy Director-General of the Department of Disease Control, Dr. Thanarak Plipat, said yesterday that the number of COVID-19 cases in Thailand is relatively low. There are two main groups: Thai nationals returning from other countries and people who had close contact with previous cases. Those returning from abroad are placed in mandatory 14-day quarantine to see if they develop symptoms. However, academics have pointed out that there may be some people infected with the virus without showing any symptoms, in various parts of the country. They have not been tested and can potentially infect others. Therefore, the Ministry of Public Health has to stay proactive in maintaining a wide ranging testing program.
An analysis of the number of COVID-19 infections in different parts of Thailand, shows 10 provinces have zero cases. However, forty-two provinces have a morbidity rate of 0.1 to 1 percent, 18 provinces have a rate of 1.1 to 5 percent, two provinces have 5.1 to 10 percent and five provinces have more than 10 percent. In the past month, 65 provinces reported no new cases. Although the figures are low, it is possible that some people with COVID-19 do not display symptoms, particularly in greater Bangkok, Chiang Mai, Phuket, Chonburi and four southern border provinces.