Change of mood over Covid restrictions as demands rise to reboot Test & Go

There’s a change of temper in some authorities circles as plans are afoot to ease some present restrictions imposed because the emergence of the Omicron variant of Covid-19. The CCSA will meet once more next Friday to suppose about the current restrictions and curbs to control the unfold of Covid-19.
Now, the Public Health Minister Anutin Charnvirakul is publicly noting the low numbers of hospital admissions and different people in ICU, despite a surge in Omicron cases since Christmas and New Year activities.

He advised Bangkok Post that the number of individuals with severe signs on ventilators or in intensive care items is still low.
“The daily fatalities haven’t exceeded 20 for some time.”

Currently a lot of Thailand is an Orange Zone, banning some activities in sixty nine of Thailand’s 77 provinces. There can be a basic ban on alcohol being served at restaurants, whilst in 7 Blue Zones (which includes provinces and some Districts within Orange Zone provinces), alcohol could be served at eating places however solely till 9pm in the meanwhile.
All that aside, rules about the serving of alcohol have been brazenly flouted in tourist hot spots like Patong and Pattaya, and the latest month-to-month Full Moon get together on Koh Pha Ngan.
Whilst health authorities are softening their tone about restrictions, some ministers seem to have merely misplaced the appetite for dragging out the listing of restrictions much longer – there may be an election sometime next yr.
For the tourist business, the re-introduction of the Test & Go program within the Thailand Pass is seen as a critical subsequent step. The Test & Go program was suspended from December 22, 2021, leaving solely Sandbox or Alternative Quarantine options for re-entering Thailand.
For now there are four Sandbox options available in the Thailand Pass, where totally vaccinated travellers to enter Thailand and keep for 7 days in a single area, free to roam round, till they produce a adverse PCR take a look at on the seventh day and might then travel freely round Thailand.
Travellers also can enter Thailand by way of non-Sandbox ports and take part in Alternative Quarantine at a registered AQ lodge. The beneficiary of the latest entry restrictions is the island of Phuket (which can be the entry level for the Krabi and Phang Nga Sandboxes) as different tourist locations watch their Christmas and New Year crowds vanish.
Industry heavy-weight and frequent author to the Thai PM, Bill Heinecke of the Minor Group – one of Thailand’s largest lodge, food and way of life companies – has penned his newest open missive to PM Prayut.
Minor International is predicated in Bangkok and operates 530 properties, together with the Anantara, Four Seasons, and Radisson Blu manufacturers.
Whilst allotting Covid well being advice to Thailand’s PM, Mr. Heinecke additionally urged a re-introduction of the Test & Go program.
Mr. Heinecke says he desires to see the Thai government welcome vacationers in the same method as other international locations. With the Omicron variant, measures similar to obligatory medical insurance and advance lodge bookings aren’t essential, he says. Foreign vacationers should only have to supply proof of vaccination and a negative Covid check in order to enter Thailand.
“Because of the milder symptomatic disease associated with Omicron, the government should resume its Test & Go scheme or open more “sandbox” areas quickly.”

Back in March, 2020, Mr. Heinecke was writing to the PM with completely different suggestions, calling for a “full lockdown”….
“I imagine that beneath your strong leadership, the message to remain home, restrict personal motion and keep away from interplay with others will be taken to heart and can help us overcome this crisis.”

But that was then, almost 2 years later Mr. Heinecke’s clearly eager to see his hotel group, and the relaxation of Thai tourism, again in full swing. Here’s the full text of his latest missive to the PM…



This week the PM Prayut Chan-o-cha was urging all government businesses to get behind the latest “Amazing Thailand New Chapter” tourism marketing campaign being readied for launch by the tip of January. The administration is pushing forward with tourism plans that the tourism economy so desperately wants.
The Ministry of Tourism and Sports has created the new slogan and journey campaign to promote varied tourist activities in Thailand. Despite the current entry restrictions, and common malaise of world travel, the Ministry are predicting between 5 million and 15 million individuals travelling to Thailand in 2022… the projection based on no new lockdowns or border closures being enacted.
Last Tuesday, the World Health Organisation chief, Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, warned the new Covid-19 variant is a “dangerous” virus.

“While Omicron causes much less extreme disease than Delta, it remains a harmful virus, notably for many who are unvaccinated.”

But again in โซล่าเซลล์คุณภาพดี , Dr. Opas Karnkawinpong, director-general of the Thai Department of Disease Control, says the Public Health Ministry says Covid-19 pandemic might be downgraded to endemic standing and given essential steps to attain the purpose.
“…it ought to become endemic inside this yr, not at present or tomorrow.”

Dr Kiattiphum Wongrajit, permanent secretary for public well being, noted that the current state of affairs had stabilised “but we nonetheless want to take care of strict precautions”.
“…caseloads have currently stabilised and are in a declining development. Severe case numbers continue to go down.”

He additionally said that vaccinations are crucial to protecting the general public against the worst results of the virus, and these that aren’t vaccinated have been urged to get their photographs shortly.
Today there were 7,793 new Covid infections reported over the previous 24 hours in Thailand, together with 270 instances from travellers who arrived from abroad. Another 18 Covid-related deaths had been additionally reported. 77,368 sufferers remain in state care, with 5,202 discharged. 527 sufferers stay in a critical situation with a hundred and five folks on ventilators..

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