The Chonburi Governor, Phakthorn Thienchai, along with the Chonburi Provincial Communicable Disease Committee, held a meeting this weekend to review current Covid-19 related measures in the province.
This comes as Chonburi hit a record new high of 1,062 cases of Covid-19 today, July 31st, 2021.
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According to the Governor, the province will stay under maximum control (Dark red) restrictions that are also mandated by the Center for Covid-19 Situation Administration, or CCSA, in Bangkok. TPN notes that the majority of the measures would have to be lifted by the CCSA before the Governor would be allowed to release his own orders allowing businesses to reopen or people to go to places like parks or pools.
These restrictions have been in place for two weeks (although other major restrictions, like the closure of Pattaya’s popular entertainment and nightlife sector, have been in place for almost four months) and so far cases in Chonburi appeared to have increased. However, doctors with Thailand’s Department of Disease Control have continually stated that the measures will need time to work.
The current restrictions, called maximum control by authorities and not a lockdown, include bans on dine-in at restaurants, an overnight mandatory curfew, closure of pools, beaches, and parks, and many other mandated business closures such as malls, gyms, barbers, and massage shops.
The Governor noted that the current Chonburi orders are “until further notice” without an expiration date or promise date of when venues can re-open, however, stated that he understands the difficulty of many residents and that officials will consistently be reviewing and monitoring the situation.
The Chonburi Provincial Disease Committee is primarily focusing on factories and industrial estates, as according to them that is where most of the current infection clusters have begun and were then brought home to families into the community. They are using a bubble and seal method in which if Covid-19 is detected at a factory it will be closed to the public for 28 days, and workers must stay on the premises, even if not positive for Covid-19. Currently, 31 factories are sealed in Chonburi, although many are allowed to continue to work while under bubble and seal measures.
The Governor has also urged the public to follow Covid-19 precautions, staying home except for essential reasons and always wearing a mask, social distancing, and other protective measures.
Chonburi will also be implementing “community isolation” which essentially is a version of field hospitals only for those asymptomatic or with the mildest of symptoms that can be done at places like temples, schools, or gyms that are not being used in order to take care of more patients. Thailand does not, except for some limited programs in place in Bangkok and occasional exceptions, allow positive patients to isolate at home, regardless of their medical status.
Finally, the Chonburi Governor stated that allocations of Covid-19 vaccines were much higher in August, and as a “dark red” zone the province would be a priority zone for vaccine allocation with the aim of getting at least 70% of residents inoculated, especially the elderly, vulnerable, and those working in the tourism industry, seen as the lifeblood of Chonburi, especially in Pattaya.
TPN media will give more updates as to the vaccine situation as verified information is given by authorities.