Beginning in mid-June, people will be permitted to remove their face masks in open spaces, provided they do not have any underlying conditions. They will still be required to wear masks in poorly ventilated areas and during large social gatherings.
Dr Kiattiphum Wongrajit, permanent secretary for the Ministry of Public Health, said the COVID situation is improving and the ministry is optimistic about entering the endemic phase as planned.
Under the new guidelines, Dr Kiattiphum said face masks will be recommended for high-risk populations, people staying indoors where ventilation is inadequate, and at large gatherings.
Previously, Deputy Prime Minister and Public Health Minister Anutin Charnvirakul said designating COVID-19 as endemic would allow people to resume their daily activities with fewer restrictions. He also said those who contract the coronavirus would be able to resume their normal daily activities.
Government Spokesperson Thanakorn Wangboonkongchana meanwhile said the Cabinet on May 24 approved the extension of the emergency decree to combat the pandemic until July 31, when the criteria for endemic status is expected to have been met.