Thailand’s Bangkok Metropolitan Administration and the Ministry of Public Health are racing against time to contain the spread of the Covid-19 virus in the Klong Toey slums, officials in both organizations said Monday.
Thailand is currently seeing the third wave of the pandemic ravage of the country with tens of thousands of people infected since the beginning of April.
Among the hardest hit regions is Bangkok, where the pandemic started, with infection rates approaching four figures daily.
Now officials are saying that the virus has spread to the densely packed Klong Toey slums. Officials warn that unless it is contained, thousands of people could be affected in a matter of days.
On Sunday night, the Ministry of Defense requested the Port Authority of Thailand to make room at the nearby Port of Bangkok for the building of the hospital to contain and manage the spread of the disease.
Local media have reported that at least 304 people have been infected by the virus on Sunday within the area. Authorities say the number will likely climb much higher in the coming days.
“You have to understand that this area is one of the most densely populated areas in Bangkok. There are slums, low rent apartments, a fresh market, a fish market, these will all contribute to growing numbers in the coming days,” a public health official told Thai Enquirer on condition of anonymity.
“Unless we can contain this now and take drastic action, this will be worse than anything we have seen previously, it will be disaster zone,” he said.
The Bangkok Metropolitan Administration and the governor’s office said that they were aware of the possibility that this could be a new epicenter for the disease.
The BMA said in a statement that they were conducted widespread testing in conjunction with local NGOs and with the Ministry of Public Health.