17 new Covid deaths, 3,095 new cases
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17 new Covid deaths, 3,095 new cases

Another 877 cases found in prisons as cumulative total nears 100,000

Bussarakham Hospital, a field hospital at Challenger Hall, Impact Muang Thong Thani exhibition centre in Nonthaburi, is opened on Friday to treat Covid patients. (Photo: Pornprom Satrabhaya)
Bussarakham Hospital, a field hospital at Challenger Hall, Impact Muang Thong Thani exhibition centre in Nonthaburi, is opened on Friday to treat Covid patients. (Photo: Pornprom Satrabhaya)

Seventeen Covid-19 deaths and 3,095 new cases were reported on Saturday, bringing the total to 565 fatalities and 99,145 cases.

Of the new cases, 877 were found in prisons, according to the Centre for Covid-19 Situation Administration (CCSA).

Since the third Covid wave began in early April, total cases have reached 70,282. Of these, 36,241 have recovered, including 1,351 discharged on Friday.

Eight of the 17 people whose deaths were reported were in Bangkok, three in Samut Prakan, two in Samut Sakhon, and one each in Rayong, Chaiyaphum, Pathum Thani and Ratchaburi.

The deceased were aged 41-83, or 62 on average. Nine of them were men, said Taweesilp Visanuyothin, the CCSA spokesman.

Eleven of them had high blood pressure and seven had diabetes. Other existing health conditions were high cholesterol, chronic kidney disease, chronic lung disease and alcoholism. Three had said that to their knowledge they did not have any existing conditions, according to Dr Taweesilp.

Five of those who died are believed to have contracted the infection from family members, and four others from friends. Three had visited crowded places such as markets and hospitals. Two had been to high-risk areas. Another two had high-risk professions — driving taxis and selling goods at a construction camp. The risk could not be identified for the other case.

Of the 3,095 new cases over the past 24 hours, 3,092 were local infections — 1,403 confirmed at hospitals, 812 through active case finding and 877 at prisons. The remaining three cases were overseas arrivals.

The prison outbreaks have been particularly worrisome, given that the Corrections Department had said nothing about them until a pro-democracy activist who was recently freed on bail said she had contracted Covid while behind bars.

The department denied the assertion by Panusaya “Rung” Sithijirawattanakul, but was forced to concede on Wednesday that it had uncovered a total of 2,835 cases at Bangkok’s two main prisons — Bangkok Remand Prison and the Central Women’s Correctional Institution — since the start of April. The figures had not been reported previously to central authorities tallying the daily figures.

Bangkok on Friday logged the most new cases (1,163), followed by Pathum Thani (222), Samut Prakan (201), Nonthaburi (126), Samut Sakhon (37), Surat Thani (34), Chon Buri (33), Nakhon Pathom (30), Ayutthaya (29) and Nakhon Si Thammarat (24), said Dr Taweesilp.

Sixteen provinces were free of cases in the past 24 hours. They were Lamphun, Maha Sarakham, Surin, Trat, Tak, Kamphaeng Phet, Chumphon, Phayao, Loei, Chai Nat, Mae Hong Son, Mukdahan, Nong Bua Lamphu, Bung Kan, Uthai Thani and Satun.

The three imported cases were Thai returnees from Cambodia — an IT professional, 23, who entered the country via a natural border pass, a restaurant employee (48) and a freelancer (21).

Of the 99,145 Covid cases to date, 63,667 (64.2%) have recovered, including 1,351 who were discharged from hospitals in the past 24 hours.

Of the 34,913 patients in hospitals, 1,234 are in critical condition and 415 are dependent on ventilators.

Global Covid-19 cases rose by 692,023 in the past 24 hours to 162.52 million, as the World Health Organization warned that this year would be “far more deadly” than last year despite good signs of progress in many countries.

The worldwide death toll went up on Friday by 12,537 to 3.37 million. India logged the most daily infections at 326,123 new cases for a total of 24.37 million.

Thailand ranked 93rd globally in the number of total cases, Dr Taweesilp said.

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