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Tests not mandatory for Wednesday Opening

Shops and eateries can reopen on Wednesday even if their operators, employees and customers have not been fully vaccinated or passed Covid-19 tests, according to the Department of Disease Control.

Dr Chawetsan Namwat, the department’s director for disease and health hazard control in emergency situations, said on Tuesday that although a policy had been drawn up for full vaccination among business operators and their employees before business and activity resumption, details of the policy had yet to be announced.

“In September, they can reopen right away while personal hygiene behaviours known as DMHTT will ensure safety,” said the director, referring to social distancing, mask wearing, hand washing, body temperature checks and use of the Thai Chana app to record locations visited.

“It is okay if vaccinations [of staff] are incomplete and antigen tests have not been conducted,” Dr Chawetsan said.

“We are just asking for cooperation. Over the next month, the business premises that can comply will attract customers,” .

Customers are also not yet required to show vaccination cards or pass antigen tests, he said, but “guidelines for compliance will be announced later”.

People’s cooperation with the “Universal Prevention” approach to protect themselves from possible infection from those around them will boost confidence in the time of “New Normal disease control”, Dr Chawetsan said.

“Resumption of business and activities cannot wait until Covid-19 outbreaks end. Otherwise, adverse impacts would be too great. Personal hygiene behaviours are fundamental,” he said.

Changes to Covid-19 controls were similar in other countries, he said.

Dr Chawetsan added that the decline in new Covid-19 cases and fatalities showed the continuation of a positive trend, with new deaths dropping below 200 in a 24-hour period for the first time since Aug 7, when there were 212 new fatalities.

“It’s becoming clearer that the country passed its peak on Aug 13,” he said — a day that saw 23,418 new Covid-19 cases and 184 fatalities.


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