Thailand: Partial lockdown on the table

  • The government is discussing the possibility of imposing a partial lockdown in Bangkok and surrounding provinces, Chiang Mai, Prachuap Khiri Khan as well as Chon Buri while heightening Covid-19 control measures in outbreak red-zone areas, as the number of new Covid-19 cases hit a new record high on 14 Apr 21.
  • The partial lockdown proposal was discussed on 14 Apr 21, said Gen Natthapon Nakpanich, secretary-general of the National Security Council, in his capacity as chairman of a Centre for Covid-19 Situation Administration (CCSA) sub-committee.
  • However, the sub-committee will have to discuss the lockdown and other proposals with Public Health Ministry further, Gen Natthapon said, before adding the decision will be based mainly on opinions from health authorities.
  • The CCSA is now concerned about the possibility of more Covid-19 clusters emerging in other areas, as there are still carriers linked to previous outbreaks who are still travelling, said Gen Natthapon.
  • He insisted the government has prepared sufficient field hospitals to accommodate all infected people.
  • More restrictions on certain types of businesses, including restaurants, shopping malls and gyms will be discussed at the meeting between the CCSA sub-committee and the ministry, said a source.
  • Several more areas will possibly be declared outbreak red zones, while certain activities that normally bring people together, such as group exercises and restaurant dining, will likely be restricted, said Gen Natthapon.
  • More Covid-19 restrictions are expected in one or two days when health authorities finish their investigation into the current wave of Covid-19 and advise the government as to what restrictions are actually needed, he said.
  • “Restaurants might have to close sooner while fitness centres will likely have to limit the number of their patrons at any given time or suspend activities which the ministry considers a Covid-19 risk,” he said.
  • Shopping malls may have to cut their opening hours and suspend certain activities that draw many people, such as music performances or sales promotion events, he said.
  • As of 13 Apr 21, 579,305 Covid-19 vaccine shots had been administered to 505,744 people, with 73,561 having received two shots, Mr Anucha said.

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