Thailand - About 10 to 20 per cent recovered patients still suffer from Covid-19 issues, say medical experts

Medical staff administer a dose of a Covid-19 coronavirus vaccine to a man in southern Thailand's Pattani province on Thursday (Sept 16, 2021). - AFP

BANGKOK, Sept 16 (Bernama): Thailand’s Department of Medical Services (DMS) found about 10 to 20 per cent of Thais who recovered from Covid-19 still experience symptoms related to the infection, or known as Long COVID.

Director of News Division of the Department of Information of Foreign Affairs Ministry Pensom Lertsithichai said the Long COVID symptoms include fatigue, muscle pain, headache and depression following the body’s reaction or side effects from drugs administered to the patients during treatment.

She said the other factors such as age, obesity and daily steroid use also increase the prevalence of Long COVID symptoms.

"Statistics have shown the symptoms could take six months to a year to recover but it may differ on each individual.

"The symptoms can be alleviated by vaccine. People who have received Covid-19 vaccine have less chance of getting Long COVID. Therefore, everyone should get vaccinated as soon as possible,” she said at Covid-19 daily briefing here today.

Long COVID remains as one of the most mysterious aspects of the pandemic.

Head of Clinical Care within the World Health Organisation (WHO) Emergencies Programme Dr Janet Diaz was quoted by AFP news agency saying there has been more than 200 reported symptoms,.

The US expert urged patients or persons who develop post Covid-19 condition to seek medical help.

Meanwhile, Pulmonary Medicine chief of the DMS' Central Chest Institute of Thailand Dr Piamlap Sangsayan said about 40 to 50 per cent of Covid-19 patients experience Long COVID in other countries.

"The lower rate among Thais may be attributed to the possibility that people who experienced the symptoms did not provide information to the health authorities after they fully recovered,” she was quoted saying by Bangkok Post.

Meanwhile, Pensom said Thailand would not offering free Covid-19 vaccine to international tourists for now.

"We still do have limited vaccine supply and we have specific plan for each batch of vaccine we receive. Therefore, there are not enough vaccines to support vaccination for international tourists. However, we will continue to vaccinate foreign nationals living in Thailand on long term,” she said.

Over the last 24 hours, Thailand recorded 13,798 new Covid-19 cases and 144 fatalities, bringing the total infections in the kingdom to 1,420,340 and 14,765 deaths, since the outbreak in January last year. - Bernama

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