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Don’t mention the ‘M’ word – face masks are back

Face masks in Thailand
Face masks in Thailand

Thailand’s ministry of Public Health has issued an “advisory” statement for people in Thailand, in public or crowded locations, to wear a face mask. Cases in Thailand have risen 10 – 20%, higher in some locations, in recent weeks.

Thailand’s Dr Opas Karnkawinpong, the permanent health secretary, is also urging hospitals to encourage people to get booster Covid-19 vaccines. He noted that a rise in new infections is leading to a commensurate rise in hospitalisations and deaths.

“The number of people getting vaccinated is declining as the Covid-19 situation has improved.”

Northern and south east Asia countries are filling 9 of the top 20 countries with new cases in the past 2 days.

But Dr Opas did say that the increase in cases was likely to be a “small wave” but expected hospitalisations and deaths to continue to rise.

Most of the current Covid-19 infections are the BA 2.75 Omicron sub-variant at the moment.

“People should wear masks in crowed places to help protect themselves and others”.

Since the mandatory wearing of masks was lifted in August this year, most Thais, particularly in public areas, have persisted with a voluntary wearing of face masks. Some public buildings, including immigration and hospitals, are still demanding customers wear a face mask.


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