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Buri Ram jab or jail

Authorities in Buri Ram have issued an order requiring everyone in the province to be vaccinated against Covid-19 or risk being fined or jailed for up to two years.

The order came from the governor, Thatchakorn Hatathathayakul, who chaired a provincial communicable disease committee meeting on Friday.

To prevent further virus transmission and help public health officials manage the vaccination drive, people aged 18 and over who live or work in the province must assess their risk of Covid-19 infection with village health volunteers, or via an online system or through a vaccination coordinating centre before the end of this month.

Disease control and public health officials will have the authority to force at-risk people to be vaccinated, as well as set dates, schedules and places to administer Covid-19 vaccines to them.

The authority stems from the 2015 Communicable Disease Act, violations of which carry a maximum one month in prison and/or fines that could be as high as 20,000 baht, depending on which part of the act is applied.

Those who refuse to be vaccinated may also be liable to a maximum two years in prison and/or a fine up to 40,000 baht for breaching the emergency decree.

The main vaccine the government is distributing right now is Coronavac, made by Sinovac Biotech in China, as the first batch of the locally produced AstraZeneca vaccine will not be available until early June.

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