New Covid-19 Outbreak in Thailand

Main picture credit Solidarity Center / Jeanne Hallacy on flickr

Almost 1,000 new cases of Covid-19 have been confirmed in Thailand in the last 3 days in the worst single outbreak in the country so far.

The cases are centred in Samut Sakhon, a coastal province near Bangkok, and have been linked to migrant workers. The area is home to around 6,000 factories as well as the largest seafood market in Thailand.

The majority of cases are among migrant Myanmar workers and may have been worsened by many migrant workers living in cramped conditions. Many of the cases in Singapore were linked to migrant workers who lived in large, cramped dorms.

The new cases were discovered after a 67-year old fish merchant was confirmed to have the virus on 17th December. A mass testing programme was launched following confirmation of the case with thousands, of mostly migrant workers, being tested.

“She had no record of traveling, and was not the origin of the virus. We suspect she contracted it from migrant workers from Myanmar at the Klang Koong market.”

“Migrant workers often board in rooms that are cramped and have many people living in close contact with one another.”

Kiatiphum Wongrajit, Permanent Secretary of Health

Thailand has implemented a number of measures in the areas including schools closing for 14 days, workers who commute to Samut Sakhon must stay at home and migrant workers entering Bangkok will be screened for the virus.

Samut Sakhon Quayside. Credit Gerry Popplestone on flickr

There have already been a number of cases in Bangkok, in people who had shopped at the Klang Koong shrimp market in Samut Sakhon .

Thailand has recorded 992 new cases since Saturday, including 382 in the last 24 hours, giving a total of 5,289 since the outbreak began. There have also been a total of 60 Covid related deaths.

The surge in cases could come at a worse time for the country who had just removed visa requirements for citizens of 56 countries in an attempt to boost tourist numbers.

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Published by flyingdogtravel

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