Runaway tourist's test result imminent

Runaway tourist's test result imminent

Phuket provincial health officials clean a condominium unit where a monkeypox patient, Thailand’s first recorded case of monkeypox, had stayed on July 22, 2022. (Photo: Department of Disease Control)
Phuket provincial health officials clean a condominium unit where a monkeypox patient, Thailand’s first recorded case of monkeypox, had stayed on July 22, 2022. (Photo: Department of Disease Control)

A German tourist who attempted to flee before his test is suspected of being the latest monkeypox case, local health authorities in Trat province said on Saturday.

The tourist, who was apprehended after the hospital alerted the police, was staying on Koh Chang island in the eastern province.

On Friday he visited a private hospital in Muang district, presenting with symptoms similar to those of monkeypox, including rashes on his genitals and hands, said Dr Winai Banchongkan, director of Trat Hospital, the state-run facility where the tourist was yesterday placed in an isolation unit.

King Chulalongkorn Memorial Hospital in Bangkok is currently testing a sample of the man's blood for the virus, said the doctor. The man on Friday refused the mandatory test and ran away, prompting the private hospital to call in police to detain him for attempting to violate Thailand's communicable disease control law, said the doctor.

Dr Surachai Chiamkun, Trat's deputy provincial health chief, said all that local disease control authorities know is he had travelled from France to Thailand. It is unclear when he arrived.

Thailand on Friday recorded its fourth official case after a Thai woman in Bangkok, who had been in close contact with several foreign friends, tested positive.


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