Emergency Health Centers Told to Prepare for Virus Resurgence

A health worker disinfects a visitor's center at Doi Inthanon National Park in Chiang Mai province on Dec. 8, 2020.

BANGKOK (Xinhua) — Thailand’s Ministry of Public Health on Monday said it had instructed all provincial administrations to open emergency health centers as a precautionary measure in case COVID-19 infections resurge.

The move came after six more COVID-19 cases were recorded on Monday in the northern province of Chiang Rai. All the six are Thai returnees from Myanmar’s Thachilek township, and are in local quarantine.

These six returnees arrived in Thailand through proper channels.

The new infections in Chiang Rai have now risen to 26, including 20 who legally crossed the border and have entered local quarantine, five illegal returnees plus one locally-transmitted case.

The Center for COVID-19 Situation Administration (CCSA) on Monday warned all Thai returnees from Myanmar that the pandemic in Myanmar is prevalent and they should immediately seek medical help if they find themselves feeling ill.

The CCSA said that under precautionary measures, all provincial hospitals will put medical personnel, medical supplies and labs on standby, to cope with any emergency.

Call centers will open in every province to allow people at risk to call for advice, said the CCSA.

In the meantime, Chiang Rai Governor Prachon Pratsakul said that he had already ordered all residents in the province to wear face masks when be outdoors.

Also, a big cleanup of the entire province is also scheduled for December 10, but there is no need to put the province under lockdown, emphasized Prachon.

The governor also said that the COVID-19 infected illegal returnees discovered last week will still have to face the Thai law once they have completed treatment in the hospital.

“These illegal acts of sneaking back into Thai soil and flouting the mandatory rules, will need to be punished and serve as a lesson so that others don’t follow suit,” said Prachon.

In another related story, an infected businessman from Myanmar who has allegedly given a false statement to health investigators about his movements in Thailand’s northern province of Tak, will be expelled from Thailand, according to the CCSA.

The lies the COVID-19 infected Myanmar businessman said, had put Thai people at risks, said the CCSA.

With that, all the places that he visited, will be declared high risk zones, with health authorities conducting random COVID-19 tests in those areas, said the CCSA.

The cumulative infections, to date, are 4,107, with 3,868 recoveries and 179 others are still being treated in hospitals. The death toll remains at 60.