The Thai Public Health Ministry gave an update this afternoon regarding Covid-19 and a cluster that has emerged primarily in the migrant worker community at a seafood market in Samut Sakhon.
The total number of cases is now at 689, identified through contact tracing, tracking and mass testing of those who work in and around the market according to DDC Director-General Dr. Opas Karnkawinpong.
Dr. Opas also stated that some connected cases had been located in nearby provinces such as Suphanburi, Nakhon Pathom, Ratchaburi, Bangkok, and Samut Prakan. All were able to be traced back to the original source of the market.
Dr Opas added that they expect this number to rise as the detailed testing, tracing and quarantining process continues, however also stated along with the Department of Disease Control that they believe they have the situation under control and will be able to fully reign in the problem within one week and before the New Year.
At this time, only Samut Sakhon remains on a strict “lockdown” style restriction and authorities say that this will stay the same for the time being. This includes closure of nearly all non essential business, domestic travel restrictions and a “requested” period of staying at home overnight. Migrant living dormitories and camps have been “hard locked down” including with barbed wire fences and migrant workers are not allowed to leave the area.
Exact details on all the new cases were not given at the press conference this afternoon but Dr. Opas stated that the public should remain calm and trust in Thailand’s sophisticated health care system and ability for tracking and tracing, stating that Thailand had been ready for another outbreak like this and to give them time to work and curb the problem.
Dr. Opas also said there was no credible evidence that seafood from the market, or seafood in general, could spread Covid-19 but still urged the public to have their meals hot and not eat them raw as this could also help prevent other diseases.
You can read more about the situation so far here:
Photo Credit: Jerry Harmer, AP, Myanmar migrant workers lined up for Covid-19 testing in Samut Sakhon.