Thai health authorities on Friday reported 6,087 new cases of COVID-19, setting a record for the second day in a row, in terms of concerns about the shortage of treatment facilities and vaccine supplies.
Officials also reported 61 deaths on Friday, bringing the total to 2,141.
About 90% of Thailand’s 270,921 coronavirus cases were reported and 95% of deaths have been recorded during a wave that began in early April. There were 992 deaths in June, more than 15 times Thailand’s total throughout 2020.
The number of patients in ICUs and ventilators has increased nationally over the past two weeks.
The Government Center for Situations Management COVID-19 said 39% of new cases reported on Friday were in Bangkok, 25% in neighboring provinces and 36% in the other 71 provinces. The deputy spokesman for the center, Apisamai Srirangsan, said Bangkok authorities should urgently establish isolation stations to separate infected people from their local communities and add beds for the treatment of serious cases.
Critics since the beginning of the year have accused the government of Prime Minister Prayuth Chan-ocha of failing to achieve a timely and adequate vaccine supplies, and efforts to obtain more have continued slowly.
Experts at a briefing at the Ministry of Health on Friday painted a bleak picture of how to prioritize who gets vaccinated.
Epidemiologist Kamnuan Ungchoosak said the arrival of the delta variant of the virus, which is believed to be more contagious, could raise the death toll to 1,400 in July and more in the coming months.
He said 80% of deaths occur among the elderly and people with chronic illnesses, and that if vaccinated it could significantly reduce the death while reducing the demand for ICU beds. About 10 percent of elderly and sick patients die, while the rate for those between the ages of 20 and 40 is less than 0.1 percent, he said.
But at the same time, there are major outbreaks among other groups, including people from construction workers ’camps and restaurant workers, who must also be vaccinated, he said.
“We are currently closing camps and businesses, but the number of cases is not declining and the economy is bad. But if we focus on the elderly and those who have chronic diseases, we may not have to close businesses and the demand for beds from these two groups will also decrease, ”Kamnuan said.
Prime Minister Prayuth has signed up in mid-October to open the country to vaccinated visitors from abroad without quarantine.
Sopon Mekthon, chairman of the government subcommittee on COVID-19 vaccine administration said only 2 million of about 16 million elderly and sick people have received vaccines.
Nakorn Premsri, director of the National Vaccine Institute, said a Thai company, Siam BioScience, was to provide the country with 10 million doses a month of locally produced AstraZeneca vaccine, but that it has been reduced to 5-6 million doses. . The company, owned by the King of Thailand, reportedly had production problems. It also has contracts to provide vaccines to other countries.
He said Thailand is trying to negotiate with other producers to fill the gap. So far, Thailand has only used vaccines from AstraZeneca and China’s Sinovac and Sinopharm, although the government says it has agreements to buy from Pfizer and Johnson & Johnson as well.
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Citation: Rising Thai virus causes concern for ICU, vaccine supply (2021, July 2) recovered on July 2, 2021 at https://medicalxpress.com/news/2021-07-thai-virus- surge-prompts-icus.html
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