Expert: Thais under threat of third Covid-19 wave


A VIROLOGIST has warned that Thailand could suffer third and fourth waves of Covid-19 infections following the latest outbreak in and around Bangkok.

On Tuesday, the outbreak centred on entertainment venues in Bangkok’s Thong Lor reached 250 infections.

Authorities responded by closing all pubs and nightspots in the area for two weeks.

Dr Yong Poovorawan, a virologist at Chulalongkorn University, predicted that Covid-19 cases will rise sharply in 2021 since “people were becoming careless about the virus risk”.

Covid-19 is thought to spread quickly in the enclosed spaces of entertainment venues, where people often have to huddle close and shout to be heard over loud music.

Moreover, party goers often visit more than one venue per night, increasing risk of transmission.

Yong said much money and effort would be spent combating the outbreak over the upcoming Songkran holiday, when millions travel to their hometowns to party and be with their families.

The virologist is an advocate of rapid vaccination to solve the crisis but said at current rates of vaccination it could take Thailand two years to reach herd immunity. In the meantime, the country risked being hit by third and fourth waves of Covid-19, he said.

As of April 2, only 0.3% of Thailand’s population (204,642 people) have been vaccinated since the inoculation programme launched on Feb 28, according to Bloomberg. — The Nation/ANN

Article type: free
User access status:
   

Next In Aseanplus News

Asean News Headlines as at 9pm on Monday (April 12)
Robots on call for home deliveries
Outcry over photo-editing job on genocide victims
Rescue continues after coal mine flood in Xinjiang
Death toll from Seroja rises to 177
Bloodshed in place of water baths
Rescue and relief for Java
Groups of up to 50 allowed for Singapore walking, cycling and kayaking tours; 25 new imported cases reported on Monday (April 12)
Thailand: Second successive day of nearly 1,000 cases as airlines banned from selling food, drinks to passengers on domestic flights
Indonesia: Muslims welcome Ramadan amid Covid-19 restrictions; virus total now goes past 1.571 million

Stories You'll Enjoy


Vouchers