Phuket's Covid cases rising, especially among migrant workers

Phuket's Covid cases rising, especially among migrant workers

Phuket health chief Dr Koosak Kookiatkul speaks to reporters on Wednesday. (Photo: Achadthaya Chuenniran)
Phuket health chief Dr Koosak Kookiatkul speaks to reporters on Wednesday. (Photo: Achadthaya Chuenniran)

PHUKET: The number of Covid-19 cases is rising rapidly, especially among migrant workers from Myanmar contributing to the reopening of the tourist island, the provincial health chief said on Wednesday.

Koosak Kookiatkul said Phuket logged 297 new Covid-19 cases last week, and 328 so far this week.

"New cases are coming on a wave of the Delta variant, which spreads 60-70% faster than the outbreak in April. There are more patients as we have more visitors and inbound workers," he said.

Dr Koosak said infections were increasing among Myanmar workers contributing to the economy at fresh markets, factories and on fishing boats.

Markets and workers' dormitories must be sealed off if infection rates exceed 10%, he said.

Three construction camps - in Patong, Karon and Thalang districts - had already been closed off. Construction was continuing, however, while medics took care of the workers.

About 30 infected Myanmar workers were staying aboard two fishing boats that brought supplies to Phuket. They were receiving medication and most of them were asymptomatic.

Increasing admissions to field hospitals in Phuket prompted provincial authorities to open a Covid-19 care centre in an unused building at the old Phuket prison on Wednesday, to treat the people who tested positive via antigen kits and remained healthy, Dr Koosak said.

On Tuesday Phuket recorded 54 new Covid-19 cases. This raised the total number of Covid-19 cases since the start of April to 1,609 and included 52 visitors who arrived under the Phuket Sandbox reopening programme that started on July 1.

Do you like the content of this article?

Anutin approves alternative Covid vaccination method to stretch supplies

Doctors in Thailand have been given the go-ahead to start giving Covid-19 booster shots under the skin, rather than injecting them into muscles, officials said on Monday, in an effort to strengthen immunity and stretch vaccine supplies.


India to resume Covid vaccine exports from next quarter

NEW DELHI: India will resume exports of Covid-19 vaccines from the next quarter, prioritising neighbouring countries first, the health minister said on Monday.


China neighbours worry Australia sub deal will destabilise region

France isn’t the only country upset about a new security pact between the US, UK and Australia: Some Southeast Asian nations are also worried the partnership could provoke China and spur a regional arms race.