Thailand reports 32 new COVID-19 cases, brings total to 114

Thailand reports 32 new COVID-19 cases, brings total to 114

A thermographic device displays the temperature of arriving passengers before they enter immigratio
A thermographic device displays the temperature of arriving passengers before they enter immigration at Bangkok's Suvarnabhumi International Airport, Thailand Mar 14, 2020. (Photo: Reuters/Athit Perawongmetha)

BANGKOK: Thailand reported 32 new COVID-19 cases on Sunday (Mar 15), bringing the total infections in the country to 114, said the Ministry of Public Health.

It was the biggest daily jump in cases in Thailand, which was one of the first countries outside China to report coronavirus infections that has since swept much of the world.

Of the confirmed cases on Sunday, two are employees at a restaurant in Bangkok owned by a Singaporean man who had previously tested positive for the coronavirus. 

Nine had visited Bangkok's Lumpinee Boxing Stadium, while eight had visited other entertainment venues. Three patients had had close contact with tourists at Bangkok's  Suvarnabhumi Airport. Five cases are imported and two are tourists in Thailand. 

Investigations into the source of the infection are still ongoing for three patients.

Separately, 51 other patients' cases are also being investigated, said health officials.

According to Dr Sukhum Kanchanapimai, permanent secretary of the Public Health Ministry, 83 people travelled from Italy on Sunday morning to Thailand's Utapao Airport in Sattahip, Chonburi province. 

Six of them showed symptoms related to COVID-19 and were transferred to hospitals for further examination. The remaining 77 travellers were sent to the Sattahip Naval Base, where they will be monitored for 14 days.  

Dr Sukhum also told reporters the Disease Control Department will launch a map showing locations in Thailand where all confirmed cases of COVID-19 were reported.

The health ministry will on Monday propose to a virus centre chaired by the prime minister to reduce people entering Thailand, close entertainment places with high risk, and cancel people gathering activities, Sukhum said.

As the country intensified efforts to contain the outbreak, Thailand's public health ministry on Saturday released detailed measures for travellers visiting the country. Travellers arriving in Thailand will be categorised into three groups for different levels of surveillance, based on where their departure was from. 

On Mar 11, Thailand said it would temporarily suspend issuing visas on arrival to visitors from 19 countries and territories, including China, to contain the spread of the coronavirus. One person has died of the virus in Thailand. Thirty seven people have recovered and been discharged from hospital.

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Source: CNA/Reuters/ek

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