Mystery death of office worker leads to department inquiry

Mystery death of office worker leads to department inquiry

The Department of Disease Control (DDC) and its partners have started investigating what caused the death of a 38-year-old office worker who died at his condominium in Bangkok this week, amid speculation he was struck down by Covid-19.

The initial finding reported that the man had received three doses of the Covid-19 vaccine, with the last one administered in January. However, no tie has yet been established linking this to his demise.

DDC deputy chief Dr Sophon Iamsirithaworn said the Institute for Urban Disease Control and Prevention worked closely with the Bangkok Metropolitan Administration's Department of Health to draw up the report.

The man was found dead in his apartment on Wednesday after he dropped out of contact with his office for several days and failed to join an online meeting with his colleagues.

Dr Sophon said the DDC prefers to wait for the autopsy results from the Institute of Forensic Medicine of Police Hospital before drawing any conclusions. The report is expected to be released shortly.

He said the department would like to urge elderly citizens and people with chronic diseases to get a booster after a four-month interval as they are the most at-risk groups. Covid vaccines are still being provided free of charge, he said.

Dr Tares Krassanairawiwong, the DDC chief, said Covid-19 infections are likely to surge during the cool season, especially with the more transmissible Omicron BA.2.75 subvariant that was first detected in India in early May.

In Thailand, the first case was reported in June. This subvariant now accounts for 42.9% of all samples tested, according to the Department of Medical Sciences (DMS). However, there is no evidence regarding its capacity to cause severe illness, Dr Tares said.

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