Here is a look at the top NATIONAL stories, chosen by our Pattaya News/TPN National team, from last week, June 7th to June 13th, with some commentary. They are not in any particular level of importance but are listed in the order of date of publication.
1. Private hospitals and local governments officially allowed to procure their own FDA-approved Covid-19 vaccines for distribution, the Royal Gazette announces
It is now official that local government and private hospitals are now allowed to purchase Covid-19 vaccines for their own distribution. However, the procurement and vaccination procedure must still be assisted by related government agencies, including the Thai FDA. The approval is aimed to speed up Covid-19 inoculations to cover at least 70 percent of the population or not less than fifty million people in order to create an immunity herd as planned by the Public Health Ministry. This is, of course, based on overall supplies of vaccines.
2. Thailand’s Ministry of Public Health officially signs for 20 million shots of Pfizer vaccines to be distributed nationwide by the end of this year
The Thai government and the distributor of the Pfizer vaccines in Thailand have finally agreed upon and signed a trading agreement for the first lot of 20 million shots to be distributed in Thailand. It is scheduled to arrive in the Kingdom later this year, although the Ministry of Public Health would not give a definitive timeline or date.
3. Thai Prime Minister announces on social media easing of some Bangkok Covid-19 restrictions, states Phuket Sandbox will move forward on July 1st
Prime Minister Prayut Chan-O’Cha on Saturday, June 12th, unofficially announced on behalf of the Bangkok Metropolitan Administration (BMA) and the CCSA the easing of several Bangkok restrictions. Five businesses that will be allowed to open under health preventive measures are museums and similar attractions, public parks and botanical parks, beauty clinics, massage shops (foot massages only), nail shops, and tattoo shops. The announcement is effective on Monday, June 14th, onwards. As of this morning, the Bangkok Metropolitan Administration also announced a similar statement as official approval, but not before confusion was caused by early morning joggers wanting to enter parks that were still closed. All parks were reopened for approved activities by 1:00 P.M.
4. Bangkok Medical Service Department postpones some Covid-19 vaccinations this week due to supply allocation delays, Public Health Ministry refuses being involved
Eight out of 12 hospitals under the jurisdiction of the Medical Service Department of Bangkok, under the BMA authorities, announced a postponement of the first shot of Covid-19 vaccinations for those who registered between June 14th and the 17th due to the delay of vaccine allocation by the government agencies, according to their statement. Prior to the announcement, many private hospitals in the capital also released a similar statement. However, the Public Health Ministry claimed that they have done their part in vaccine allocations to local governments nationwide and are not responsible for a shortage of vaccines in Bangkok. This is probably caused by a number of related agencies who are involved in the vaccine rollout across the country, according to them. However, the complicated management seemed to cause frustration from residents who are living in Thailand and are interested to register for the vaccination, both foreigner and Thai national.
And, that is all for this week. Thank you as always for reading the Pattaya News/TPN News!