Phuket officials will also request to no longer include ‘Green’ patients ‒ that is, those who experience little to know symptoms of infection ‒ in their daily reports.
The request will ask the CCSA permission for Phuket officials to report only patients designated as ‘Yellow’ or ‘Red’, or who had died as a result of a COVID-19 infection.
The news came at a meeting of the Phuket Provincial Communicable Disease Committee chaired by Phuket Governor Narong Woonciew earlier today (Feb 21).
According to a report of the meeting published by the Phuket office of the Public Relations Department (PR Phuket), there was no mention of the word “endemic” at the meeting, despite widespread reports of Phuket Vice Governor Pichet Panapong yesterday revealing that Phuket officials will ask the CCSA to declare COVID-19 an “endemic” disease in Phuket.
Of note, the report by PR Phuket did not deny that the reports of Vice Governor Pichet announcing the move to have COVID-19 declared endemic in Phuket were accurate.
At the meeting today, Vice Governor Pichet sat in his usual position, by the Governor’s right hand.
Although the meeting was described as held “to discuss ways to solve the COVID-19 situation in Phuket to solve problems in the area “, the rest of the PR Phuket report revealed no new policies to be brought into effect to mitigate the effect of the COVID-19 policies in force in Phuket, or to alleviate the economic suffering continuing across the island.
Instead, PPHO Chief Dr Kusak Kukiatikoon was reported as repeating all the measures repeated by Phuket officials now for months: for people to protect themselves from infection and to practice the guidelines set out under the national government’s VUCA policy (Vaccine, Universal Protection, COVID Free Setting, ATK testing).
Dr Kusak did point out that most current cases of people testing positive for COVID-19 were ‘Green’ patients.
There are currently 498 ‘Yellow’ patients occupying the 730 hospital beds dedicated for ‘Yellow patients’, and 15 ‘Red’ patients occupying the 45 hospital beds reserved for such severe cases, he noted.
“About 7,400 Green patients are being treated at home [under Home Isolation],” he said.
The PR Phuket report noted that people were asked “not to panic”.
“People are asked for cooperation to strictly follow the DMHTTA measures: maintain social distancing, wash your hands regularly and wear a mask to jointly prevent and control the spread of COVID-19,” the report advised.
The report only casually referred to the high number of schools on the island currently not holding on-site classes due to students testing positive for COVID-19.
The only mention was to assure that schools were asked to hold the end-of-year exams “according to the measures of the Ministry of Public Health”.
“In case of exams at various levels, they [schools] are asked to provide rooms for high-risk people or infected people so that students can take part in the exams,” the report said.