Post-pandemic or endemic?
As Covid-19 is now projected to affect only small to medium sized slices of the population going forward, the Public Health Ministry will declare Thailand to be in post-pandemic mode from this Friday, according to health permanent secretary Kiattiphum Wongrajit.
July 1 coincides with the abolition of the Thailand Pass pre-travel digital gateway for overseas visitors, along with the compulsory health insurance called at US$10,000.
"We will keep to our schedule to announce a post-pandemic era on July 1. And what we expect to see is only small or medium clusters that will not do any harm to our public health service. The disease will be under control."
Rather than labelling Covid-19 as an endemic from July, the health ministry is prepared to declare a post-pandemic phase.
They had decided to hold off until the World Health Organisation officially declares Covid-19 to be endemic.
While Kiattiphum confirmed the arrival of the two additional Covid-19 subvariants BA.4 and BA.5, he claimed that their effects and risk of transmission had not yet been fully studied. The number of severely affected patients admitted to hospitals has not changed in Thailand whilst there had been a rise in both cases and hospitalisations in other countries.
After July, Thailand is fully open to the rest of the world (excepting the need to produce a negative PCR or ATK test in the 72 hours before travel for unvaccinated or under vaccinated travellers). There will be no Thailand Pass and no compulsory insurance required before travelling to Thailand.
But inbound travellers will be required to show their vaccination documents at immigration (and probably at their airline check-in). Entertainment venues will be also allowed to open "officially" until 2 in the morning in many locations.
SOURCE: Bangkok Post
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