Covid traces located in Samut Prakan

Covid traces located in Samut Prakan

The Department of Disease Control (DDC) yesterday said health authorities found the Covid-19 virus on the surface of an exercise fitness machine at a gym room of a quarantine place in Samut Prakan where a French woman who contracted the disease stayed.

Opas Karnkawinpong, acting director-general of the DDC, yesterday said the authorities had collected seven samples from the quarantine place for checking and found one sample collected from the surface of an exercise fitness machine at the gym room had the Covid-19 virus.

Dr Opas said so it is possible that people who had not completed the 14-day quarantine used the gym room and spread the virus.

However, he did not go into details on how the French woman contracted Covid-19. He only confirmed that about 100 people who had associated with the French patient had tested negative.

Dr Opas said the people, who had contact with the French woman were her family members, friends, other passengers on her flight and medical officers.

He said the department has investigated the source of transmission at the quarantine place at Samut Prakan, the French embassy and her house's neighbourhood in Surat Thani's Koh Samui district.

However, the Samut Prakan public health office will monitor symptoms in 40 medical officers in the quarantine place to make sure they are healthy, he said.

Deputy Prime Minister and Public Health Minister Anutin Charnvirakul said it is likely the French patient contracted the disease during 14 days of quarantine but Thais can trust the prevention measure of the ministry.

Meanwhile, Theerapong Chuaichoo, district chief of Koh Samui, said villagers on the island must increase their protection and strictly follow health instructions such as by wearing a mask and washing hands while convenience stores and markets must also control the disease.

One of the dwellers of Ko Samui district said he is afraid if a second wave occurs, the island will lose tourists and income once again.

He also asked whether the 14-day quarantine is adequate for preventing the disease.

In addition, four new cases of Covid-19 infections were reported by the Centre for Covid-19 Situation Administration (CCSA) yesterday -- a French woman on Koh Samui, who was treated at a hospital on the island, and three quarantined Thai returnees from Austria and Hong Kong -- raising the total to 3,731 cases.

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