Phuket Provincial Public Health Office (PPHO) Chief Dr Kusak Kukiattikoon confirmed the news during a live broadcast from the Phuket Sandbox Emergency Operation Center (EOC) at the Phuket Provincial Police headquarters in Phuket Town this morning (Sept 8).
“ATKs are pretty easy to buy at pharmacies. Arrivals can bring their own ATK and conduct the test at the checkpoint by themselves. We have health officers standing by to give advice and check whether they conducted the test properly,” Dr Kusak said.
“If the result comes out as negative, the health officer will issue a confirmation document. The document can be used to enter Phuket,” he added.
However, Dr Kusak noted that the document issued by the officer allowing the arrival to enter Phuket will be deemed valid for entering Phuket, but may not be accepted by health officers in other provinces, or deemed valid for other purposes.
“This may help people who regularly travel between Phuket and Phang Nga,” Dr Kusak said.
Phuket people leaving the island may also bring their own ATKs to the checkpoint and conduct the test themselves there so they can be issued a negative test confirmation document that will be valid for 72 hours, allowing them to return to Phuket using the same document if they return within the 72 hours, he said.
The move to allow people to use their own ATKs to be tested for COVID-19 at the checkpoint has been approved for seven days, from today (Sept 8) to Sept 14, Dr Kusak noted.
“For those tourists from other provinces, they must still present negative results of an RT-PCR test or ATK within 72 hours of arriving, not within seven days,” Dr Kusak reminded travellers.
Of note, a last-minute change in the entry requirements for arrivals to Phuket from other provinces is that they no longer need to be tested by RT-PCR method on Day 5 of their stay if they are staying on the island more than seven days.
“We have contacted two operators to set up testing booths and provide ATK testing services at the Phuket Check Point, but right now they are still looking to confirm where to set up the booths,” Dr Kusak said.
“We are pleased to let several operators set up testing services. The greater number of booths, the more convenient for our arrivals,” he added.