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Maximum of 50,000 COVID-19 daily infections predicted after Songkran

The Thai Ministry of Public Health has predicted that there will be a maximum average of 50,000 COVID-19 cases a day after the Songkran holidays next week, about 3,000 new cases of lung inflammation and 150 daily fatalities, if public cooperation in complying with safety measures remains at the present level.

The scenario, as painted by the Public Health Ministry, is that, by April 19th, the number of new infections will surge to 50,000 a day and, in early May, the number of lung inflammation cases will be around 3,000 a day, with about 900 cases requiring ventilators, and the death toll will be around 150 per day

In a worst case scenario, in which restrictions are further eased, public cooperation is lacking and/or inoculation is lower than 200,000 doses per day, cases of lung inflammation could double to 6,000 a day, with 1,700 cases needing ventilators and the daily fatalities estimated at 250.

Current daily infections are hovering at just over 20,000 (excluding positive antigen tests) and the deaths have been fewer than 100 a day for weeks.

Public Health Minister Anutin Charnvirakul, meanwhile, said that his ministry will propose to the Centre for COVID-19 Situation Administration (CCSA) tomorrow (Friday) that it does away the RT-PCR tests upon arrival for all international visitors and use rapid antigen tests instead, as Thailand is moving toward reclassifying COVID-19 as an endemic disease.

He also indicated that, if the situation during the Songkran holidays is kept under control, even though infections may surge, more restrictions could be eased.

The CCSA will consider final touches for all the preparations and measures to be implemented during the long holidays, ahead of a mass exodus from Bangkok and other cities next week.

Meanwhile, the Health Ministry has been urging people to get booster jabs and the unvaccinated to get inoculated before Songkran.

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