The Thai Prime Minister, Prayut Chan O’Cha, posted on his social media accounts in the past hour, directly addressing speculation over the past several hours about further restrictions, closure measures, regulations, and other moves to control the Covid-19 coronavirus, especially in Bangkok and maximum control (Dark red, by a Thai color-coding system) provinces.
The PM confirmed in his post, which you can read in Thai here, that after a meeting with the Center for Covid-19 Situation Administration, or CCSA, and relevant agencies, doctors, and experts, that further measures were needed.
This comes after measures enacted on Monday of this week, which you can read about here, were seen by experts from the Public Health Ministry and Department of Disease Control as “not enough”. The spokesperson for the CCSA, Apisamai Srirangsan, said at a press conference this afternoon that people were not taking overnight “stay at home” restrictions in Bangkok and other areas seriously enough and many people continued to gather, socialize, gamble, drink alcohol, and other behaviors that could continue to spread the Covid-19 virus.
Apisamai was the first to state that the CCSA was considering stricter measures, as well as changing color codes in some provinces.
According to Prime Minister Prayut’s post, there is a need to urgently increase public travel restrictions as much as possible to stop the spread of Covid-19, based on advice from medical experts from the CCSA. There is also a need to close more businesses and places where people gather, unfortunately. The CCSA is currently debating and deciding what measures to implement.
A timeframe on when they would formally announce these measures or what they would be was not stated.
The PM also stated that governor’s in every province had been instructed to strengthen the rules to stop the spread of Covid-19, especially in maximum control areas like Bangkok and surrounding provinces, as well as the deep South.
The PM also stated the following-
-There will be more discussions around economic assistance and financial aid for those affected
-One of the items being discussed is education costs, which many parents will be happy to hear.
-As we have previously stated, Rapid Antigen tests are now available at applicable Bangkok clinics (Check in advance) and can be used for proactive screening.
-Processes for home or community isolation for asymptomatic or mild patients were being implemented, especially in Bangkok, to relieve pressure on hospitals. (Thailand previously has had the policy that anyone who tests positive for Covid-19 must undergo medical supervision at a hospital/field hospital/similar facility.
-Thailand will move ahead with combining Sinovac and AstraZeneca vaccines, despite some concerns.
-The PM understands that going into further restrictions and measures is very difficult but stressed that Thailand must fight the current round of Covid-19 as quickly as possible and that Thailand would “fight together.”