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12 Weeks of 0 Local Infections Doesn’t Mean Thailand Will Escape Covid-19 2nd Wave, Health Ministry Warns

The Defense ministry hosted an online training session on Monday to prepare for new outbreaks.

Eighty-three days without local transmission of Covid-19 does not guarantee that Thailand will remain free of the coronavirus, said the director-general of the Disease Control Department.

Dr. Suwannachai Wattanayingcharoenchai said that the 12 weeks Thailand has enjoyed without local infections doesn’t mean that the country has impervious to a second wave, especially as the economy has nearly reopened completely and Thai and foreign people, including migrant workers, continue to enter the country.

Other countries faced the same risks and they’ve succumbed to new Covid-19 outbreaks after their long periods of no local infection. He cited Vietnam, South Korea, Japan and New Zealand.

Suwannachai said the government doesn’t intend to maintain a policy of accepting no infections at all, but want to be able to detect patients quickly, efficiently treat them and limit the spread of the virus within the capacities of public health resources.

With that in mind, the Defense and Public Health ministries hosted a training session on Monday to prepare for new outbreaks.

At the Defense Ministry, emergency teams from Bangkok, Ayutthaya, Samut Sakhon and Chonburi instructed administrators from Chiang Mai, Tak, Sa Kaeo, Ranong, Surat Thani, Krabi, Phuket in online training aimed at rehearsing emergency personnel deployment and preparing their responses to a Covid-19 reoccurrence. Previous cases were brought up and discussed, to identify development that suits each province’s practices.

The Ministry of the Interior previously ordered every province to make and submit a plan to confirm their readiness to handle new outbreaks.

The Center for Covid-19 Situation Administration on Monday reported one new coronavirus case found in quarantine. A 24-year Thai male student who returned from Indonesia on Aug. 3 tested positive while in state quarantine in Chonburi.

The CCSA also reported one new case on Sunday, a 47-year old Thai man returned from Singapore on Aug. 14.

Total infections in Thailand are 3,378, with 3,194 recoveries and 58 deaths.

The National News Bureau of Thailand contributed to this report.