Thai cabinet to be asked to ease requirements for face masks

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Thailand’s Public Health Minister confirmed that there are no laws forcing people to wear face masks, but he also sought cooperation from all parties, including Thai citizens and overseas tourists, to prevent the spread of the Covid-19 outbreak.

On December 2021 Public Health Permanent Secretary Dr. Kiattibhoom Vongrachit said, during his visit to the Chaiyaphum provincial hospital yesterday (Friday), that the requirement to wear face masks in public places could be eased in certain areas, when COVID-19 situation in the country has improved and most of the population has been fully vaccinated.

Concerning warnings from the Centre for COVID-19 Situation Administration (CCSA) that people might be fined for not wearing a face mask, Deputy Prime Minister and Public Health Minister Anutin Charnvirakul stated that the Ministry of Public Health and related agencies have not reported this and the matter is still under consideration.

The Deputy Prime Minister stated that the suggestion is beneficial as the most effective prevention protocol, but it should first be evaluated by all parties, emphasizing that enforcement is unnecessary if everyone cooperates in adhering to the prevention measures. He is concerned, however, about some international tourists who do not wear face masks while in Thailand and stated that the ministry will discuss the problem with the CCSA. He understands that the practice may not be used in other countries, but he encourages them to comply with the country’s public health regulations.

When asked if stricter measures would be enforced if infection cases reached 10,000, the Public Health Minister responded that the situation is still within the Department of Disease Control’s epidemiological scenarios, with severe cases not increasing and more people getting vaccinated, and that adjustments will not be made at this time. 

Nonetheless, he asked all parties to be cautious and work together to prevent and contain the Covid-19 pandemic.

Mirko Bennardo
Author: Mirko Bennardo

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