Photo by Lillian SUWANRUMPHA / AFP
As the number of recovering COVID-19 patients has exceeded the number of new infections in the past 10 days, so has the quantity of unoccupied hospital beds in Bangkok and its neighboring provinces, said Public Health Permanent Secretary Dr. Kiattibhoom Vongrachit today (Sunday).
Citing the case of Busarakham field hospital, he said that, as of yesterday, there were 1,905 patients still undergoing treatment, compared to 3,526 patients last week, representing a drop of 54%, and the Nimibutr pre-admission facility, which is now only accommodating 94 patients, divided into 54 “green” (mild symptoms) patients, 34 “yellow” (moderate symptoms), and six “red” (severe case) patients.
Dr. Kiattibhoom added, however, that infections in upcountry provinces, particularly in communities, markets, work places and construction worker dormitories, have not declined, hence the need for active mass screenings, to separate the infected and have them quarantined in home or community isolation.
He expressed concern over infections in families, especially among those who are unvaccinated, which may lead to severe illness or death, as he emphasized the need for the rapid inoculation of people over 60, those afflicted with any of the seven underlying diseases and especially pregnant women, the death toll among whom is 2.5 times higher than average.
Dr. Kiattiphum said that the Disease Control Department has been instructed by the Ministry of Public Health to formulate a vaccination plan for people who need the third booster jabs. The department is also tasked with distributing 1.5 million doses of the Chinese-made Sinovac vaccine to provinces outside Bangkok.
More than 30.6 million doses of vaccines have been administered to date. These include 22,807,078 first doses, 7,287,885 second doses and 584,326 the third booster shots.
Meanwhile, Bangkok Governor Aswin Kwanmuang said today that the city administration has launched the Line service @BKKCOVID19CONNECT, to facilitate the transfer of people testing positive, using antigen test kits or RT-PCR tests, for treatment at pre-admission centres, field hospitals or “hospitels”, depending on their symptoms.
He said that the patients themselves, or their relatives, can enter their basic information into the system, so their cases can be processed.