Hiding Medical History Related to Virus is Now Jailable Offense

Workers prepare a building in Nakhon Pathom province to serve as a local quarantine facility on April 10, 2020.

BANGKOK — Patients at public hospitals who conceal their travel history, medical conditions, and any information related to the coronavirus could now face up to six months in prison.


The new regulations, issued by the Department of Medical Services on Friday, were made in response to reports of patients hiding their exposure to the coronavirus, which in turn put medical professionals at risk.

The announcement cited Article 137 of the Penal Code, which criminalized giving false information to state officials. Violators faced no more than six months of jail term and a fine of up to 10,000 baht.

The government said 80 medical workers have been infected with the coronavirus so far, out of approximately 2,400 total infection cases. Health officials say some doctors and nurses contracted the virus from patients who concealed their travel history and other vital information.