The Thai government announced on Thursday that they would reimplement quarantine free travel in light of lower-than-predicted Covid-19 numbers after the new year break.
While Omicron has indeed reached Thailand’s shores, the outbreak has been mostly contained and the economy will once again be the priority of the government.
A key part of Thailand’s economic recovery will be the return of foreign tourists to Thailand. But while the government is proceeding cautiously with reopening the country, a senior doctor warns that the job is only half done.
“It is clear from the recent Covid-19 numbers that not only is the vaccine preventing a lot of severe illness and deaths but it also seems like its working in prevent transmissions to a certain extent as well,” a senior doctor at Bhumibol Hospital told Thai Enquirer.
“What might happen now is that the more transmissible Omicron variant becomes the predominant strain we see in the country which is not a net negative due its less severe characteristics.
However, the doctor said that the government must continue o be vigilant in sourcing new vaccines and cures that are more effective against new mutations which we will see.
“What cannot happen if we want to go back to normal is for the country to sit down and take it easy, especially with new variants likely,” she said. “We cannot have a repeat of the vaccine acquisition program of last year.”
This was in reference to the government’s much criticized vaccine orders program which saw the country lag behind regional neighbors and reliant on a locally-produced licensed AstraZeneca vaccines.
“The government must be on the cutting edge of new innovations whether it is vaccines or pills or inhalers, we must be competitive with more developed countries in ordering the latest technology.”