As the number of Covid-19 cases in Thailand continues to decrease, the National Communicable Diseases Committee has started talking about post-pandemic measures or lingering preventative measure when the coronavirus is declared endemic in Thailand, including any requirement for travellers to wear face masks, according to Public Health Minister Anutin Charnvirakul.
Speaking to Thai media yesterday, he claimed that, with public collaboration and increased vaccinations, new cases and deaths have decreased faster than predicted. A public health panel had a meeting yesterday where it was debating how to deal with Covid-19 once it was declared endemic.
At the start of this month, Thailand dropped PCR tests – pre-travel and on-arrival – for vaccinated travellers while the Thailand Pass is still required for Thais and foreigners coming into the country. Since then, there have been at least 300,000 people who entered Thailand since the Test & Go and Sandbox programs were scrapped.
The Minister declared that there have been fewer than 10 cases of Covid 19 from visitors arriving each day… “so there is a chance for Thailand Pass to be scrapped as well”.
“To limit the spread of Covid, the Department of Disease Control would take steps to encourage travellers to wear face masks.”
Given the comments from the public health minister, as expected, the requirement for people to wear face masks in public, even after the Thailand Pass is dropped, will be required in Thailand.
But no dates have been given for the dropping of the Thailand Pass digital gateway system, or when Thailand will declare the coronavirus endemic, or if the declaration will be in all provinces at once.
The Public Health Ministry lowered the Covid 19 alert to Level 3 from Level 4, however “going to crowded places like entertainment venues is not advised”.
“Right now, controlling the disease is not a problem but controlling people’s behaviour is. We still need to encourage people to put on face masks”.
“People who are yet to be fully vaccinated or are in risk groups should avoid travelling”, according to Director-General of the Disease Control Department Dr. Opas Kankawinpong.
SOURCE: Bangkok Post