Omicron has spread to 71 out of 77 provinces in Thailand

Thailand has so far found 5,397 cases of Covid-19 with the new variant having spread to 71 out of 77 provinces in the country, the government said on Monday.

“Lab tests confirmed,” said Dr Sumanee Wacharasin, an assistant spokeswoman of the Centre for Covid-19 Situation Administration (CCSA).

Out of 15,345 Covid samples that were taken from around the country between November 1 and January 9, 64.71 per cent were Delta and 35.17 per cent were Omicron.

The majority of Omicron cases are being found in Health District 13 (Bangkok with 1,820 cases), District 6 (Chachoengsao, Prachinburi, Sa Kaeo, Samut Prakan, Chanthaburi, Chonburi, Trat and Rayong with 962 cases) District 7 (Kalasin, Khon Kaen, Mahasarakham and Roi Et with 785 cases) and District 11 (Chumphon, Nakhon Si Thammarat, Surat Thani, Krabi, Phang Nga, Phuket and Ranong with 540 cases).

Of the 7,319 Covid cases that were found in the general Thai population (excluding 195 cases in prisons and 412 imported cases) in the past 24 hours, the highest numbers were 767 in Chonburi followed by 693 in Samut Prakan, 534 in Bangkok, 513 in Phuket, 383 in Ubon Ratchathani, 261 in Nonthaburi, 227 in Nakhon Si Thammarat and 203 in Khon Kaen.

Last week, 91.3 per cent of Covid cases that were found amongst arrivals from abroad were Omicron.

Sumanee said if the daily number of Covid cases continues to increase in this trajectory, the number of cases could go up to around 20,000 cases per day by the end of January and around 30,000 cases per day by the end of February.

The government is setting up field hospitals, community isolation centers, encouraging home isolation for mild cases, ramping up testing and providing booster shots in response to the new wave, she said.

Sumanee said 48 per cent of people infected with Omicron that were found in Thailand were asymptomatic and the common symptoms of its infection include coughing (54 per cent), sore throat (37 per cent), fever (29 per cent), muscle aches 15 per cent, mucus in nostril (12 per cent), headache (10 per cent), difficulty breathing (5 per cent) and a lessened sense of smell (2 per cent).

People with these symptoms should get tested.

If positive and asymptomatic or have mild symptoms, they should contact the National Health Security Office’s 1333 hotline and press 14 to enter either home isolation or community isolation programs, depending on whether their private accommodation is suitable for home isolation or not.

For severe cases such as having asthmatic and fatiguing symptoms or a high fever of more than 39 Celsius for more than one day, they should contact the Erawan Emergency Medical Service Center’s 1669 hotline. They will be assessed and if needs be, they will be sent to a hospital, a field hospital or a hospital, depending on their medical condition.

Currently, 22.7 per cent of 178,139 hospital beds around the country are occupied compared to 11 per cent at the end of December. For Bangkok, 30.7 per cent out of 27,976 hospital beds are occupied.

Of the 4,955 “red beds” around the country that are being reserved for severe cases which require ventilators, 4.3 per cent are now occupied.

Of the 60,928 “yellow beds” for moderate cases, 3.2 per cent were occupied compared to 6.4 per cent on December 31.


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