Buriram authorities order harsh legal penalties against high-risk Covid-19 individuals who refuse vaccines

Buriram –

The Buriram Communicable Disease Committee today, May 14th, ordered a major new restriction, stating that those who are in a high-risk group for Covid-19 infections and refuse to receive Covid-19 vaccinations will be facing strict legal charges with a hefty fine and possible prison time.

The provincial disease committee has re-issued the Order of the Buriram Provincial Communicable Disease Committee with some significant changes. All Buriram residents over the age of 18 must now conduct a Covid-19 self-assessment from the provincial authorities in order to calculate the risk of Covid-19 infection individually. It is unclear, notes The Pattaya News, if this includes foreign residents.

If the communicable disease control officer detects that an individual is at risk or may be at risk of contracting an infectious disease, the official shall have the authority to order the person to receive a Covid-19 vaccination on the exact date, time, and place designated by the official in order to prevent the domestic spread of the disease.

If any individuals refused to conduct the assessment, they shall be subject to imprisonment for up to one month or a fine not exceeding ten thousand baht of a penalty under Section 51 of the Communicable Disease Act B.E. 2558.

If any individuals who are at risk or may be at risk of contracting an infectious disease refused the inoculation, they shall be subject to a fine not exceeding ten thousand baht of a penalty under Section 51 of the Communicable Disease Act B.E. 2558.

They may also be facing imprisonment for up to two years and/or a fine not exceeding forty thousand baht under Section 18 of the Emergency Decree on Public Administration in Emergency Situations, B.E. 2548.

The order did not specifically clarify what a high-risk group is or what standards are used to classify that. This order essentially makes the province the first in Thailand to “mandate” vaccines for certain high-risk groups. The Public Health Minister, Anutin Charnvirakul, later stated that the governor did have the authority to make this particular order, citing the Emergency Decree and Communicable Disease Act.

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