So far the results have been impressive, PPHO Deputy Chief Somsuk Sumparnprapeep told The Phuket News.
At last report a total of 266 spas in Phuket had registered through a web portal set up at https://spa.hss.moph.go.th/Self/ to inspected and approved by the Ministry of Public Health to attest that they comply with the regulations to help prevent the spread of the disease.
Of those, 225 had been inspected and approved, and a further 25 are awaiting inspection. However, 41 spas in Phuket failed their inspections.
“We found good feedback and impressive results from spa businesses. Most of them are ready to provide services to people. They have prepared their places and trained their staff well. They are safe to provide services,” Mr Somsuk said.
“But I expect more spas to follow the ‘new normal’. Phuket has about 600 places that provide spa services, according to PPHO records,” he added.
The spas that failed to pass inspection were ordered to cease providing the specific services affected until Phuket health officers could return and confirm that the spa was fully compliant, Mr Somsuk explained.
“All spas we inspected enforced social distancing very well, such as customers not being allowed any services taking longer than two hours, and the massage rooms had been organised to maintain a distance of at least 1.5 meters between clients with a barrier set up to separate them,” Mr Somsuk said.
The full checklist is comprehensive, Mr Somsuk noted. (See full checklist here, in Thai only.)
“For example, all areas where customers touch must be cleaned every time, and staff and customers must wear a face mask at all times,” he said.
The full checklist also provides guidelines for specific people in the spa to follow, from the receptionist to the spa therapist providing the service.
Phuket health officers will continue their inspections every week,” Mr Somsuk added.
For spas that have yet to register for inspection, Mr Somsuk noted that the registration website had been experiencing technical problems for the past few days.
“They [the Department of Health Services Support] are aware of the problem and are working on it right now. We don’t know when the website will be up and running again, but in the meantime spa operators can just come to our office and register,” he said.