Thailand logged 41 new Covid-19 fatalities over the past 24 hours, a new daily record, and 2,455 new infections, the Public Health Ministry reported on Wednesday morning.
The new cases comprised 1,976 among the general public and 479 among prison inmates.
Over the past 24 hours, 2,571 patients recovered and were discharged from hospitals.
In the third wave of Covid-19 from April 1, total cases increased to 109,031 while 64,339 patients recovered. The death toll from the period rose to 779.
From the start of the Covid-19 pandemic early last year, the death toll went up to 873 and the cumulative number of infections reached 137,894.
The previous record high of fatalities over a 24-hour period was 34 on May 12, when there were also 1,983 new Covid-19 infections.
Taweesilp Visanuyothin, spokesman for the Centre for Covid-19 Situation Administration, said later that the 41 new fatalities were 29-86 years old. Twenty-five were men and 16 women.
Sixteen of the dead were in Bangkok, seven in Samut Prakan province, three in Nonthaburi, two each in Chon Buri and Pathum Thani, and one each in Sing Buri, Sukhothai, Udon Thani, Narathiwat, Loei, Sakon Nakhon, Nakhon Sawan, Prachin Buri, Trang, Nakhon Si Thammarat and Samut Sakhon.
Twenty-seven of the deceased had suffered from hypertension and another 24 had diabetes. Other chronic conditions among them were high cholesterol (14 cases), renal disease (10), heart disease (7), lung disease (4), liver disease (2), previous stroke (2), obesity (1) and alcoholism (1).
Thirteen of the new fatalities contracted Covid-19 from family members and 13 others from friends, colleagues, roommates, neighbours and snooker players. Eight either lived in or had visited outbreak areas, five had visited crowded areas and one was a security guard.
The 2,455 new Covid-19 cases over the previous 24 hours included 1,960 local infections in 61 provinces, 479 prisoners and 16 imported cases, the spokesman said.
Of the 1960 infections among the general public, 1,210 were confirmed at hospitals and 750 via mass testing.
Bangkok still logged the most local infections – 975 — followed by 259 in Phetchaburi, 122 in Nonthaburi, 100 in Samut Prakan, 61 in Pathum Thani, 42 in Songkhla, 40 in Chon Buri, 30 in Tak, 24 in Surat Thani and 21 in Samut Sakhon.
Daily case increments appeared stable in Thailand, with new infections found in both old and new clusters, Dr Taweesilp said. Bangkok had a new cluster of 12 cases in Saphan Lek area of Phra Nakhon district.
Dr Taweesilp said that during the new wave of Covid-19 from early last month, Bangkok logged 36,542 cases and 365 fatalities — a high mortality rate of 1%.
On Tuesday, 16 provinces were free of new Covid-19 cases: Phitsanulok, Roi Et, Ang Thong, Surin, Phetchabun, Phichit, Kamphaeng Phet, Trat, Uttaradit, Chai Nat, Nong Khai, Phangnga, Amnat Charoen, Mae Hong Son, Mukdahan and Bung Kan.
The 16 imported Covid-19 cases were arrivals from India (a Thai businesswoman), Kuwait (1), the United States (1), the Maldives (1), Saudi Arabia (3), Malaysia (1), Myanmar (1) and Cambodia (7).
Dr Taweesilp said 45,256 Covid-19 patients were now at hospitals — 18,631 at conventional hospitals and 26,625 at field hospitals — while 1,210 of them were critically ill and 402 dependent on ventilators.
Global Covid-19 cases rose by 523,429 in 24 hours to 168.51 million. The worldwide death toll went up by 12,086 to 3.49 million. India had 208,886 new cases for a total of 27.16 million and 4,172 new fatalities for a toll of 311,421.
Daily increments worldwide were declining, Dr Taweesilp said.