In a public notice issued this morning, Vachira Phuket Hospital management asked, “Due to the epidemic situation of COVID-19 virus infection, in order to reduce the transmission and for the safety of patients staying at the hospital, the hospital asks for cooperation with all service recipients to ‘Abstain from visiting patients, only one visitor per patient.”
The hospital advised relatives to communicate with inpatients by phone, video call or other means instead of traveling to the hospital.
The request came as officials at the Phuket Provincial Public Health Office (PPHO) this morning reported the number of confirmed cases of people in Phuket with COVID-19 since Apr 3 had risen to 82.
Of the 18 news cases, 10 were confirmed after 4pm yesterday and the remaining eight were confirmed after 6pm yesterday, the PPHO reported.
The PPHO confirmed this evening that the number of confirmed COVID cases in Phuket had now climbed to 98.
Phuket Vice Governor Pichet Panapong at the meeting of the Phuket Communicable Disease Committee at Phuket Provincial Hall warned more infections were expected.
Joined by fellow Vice Governors Vikrom Jakthee and Piyapong Choowong, and Vachira Hospital Director Chalermpong Sukontapol, V/Gov Pichet said, “The province has prepared various locations such as field hospitals and has proactive screening in the Patong area. It is an epidemic area.
“On April 11 [Sunday], we screened more than 300 people in risk groups and found four cases. On Apr 12, we screened more than another 300 people, and we are still waiting for the test results for those,” he said.
The proactive screening, being conducted by mobile test vans stationed on Bangla Rd, will continue tomorrow, he added.
V/Gov Pichet also called on all local administrations to ramp up efforts to ensure risk areas were properly sanitised and to implement preventive measures.
“Monitor and control the spread of COVID-19 by spraying disinfectant in various places in the areas where you are responsible, where infected people or people at high risk are found to have been using the service,” he said.
V/Gov Pichet repeated the request for all people who have been at risk of infection to present themselves to their nearest hospital to be tested.
He also urged all people to practice “intensive disease prevention measures”, such as wearing a mask, frequently cleaning their hands with alcohol-based sanitiser and to avoid any gatherings.
Meanwhile, the PPHO has continued with issuing its timelines of movements of people now confirmed as infected, including people who had travelled to Phuket and later confirmed infected after they had left the province.
Among them is a Chinese woman, 33, who tested positive on Koh Samui after visiting “Shelter (Illuzion)” on Apr 2 with two friends. The woman, who had been living on Koh Samui for about one year, had also visited Rustic and Blue cafe in Rawai and We Cafe on Chaofa West Rd in Wichit during her time in Phuket.
Meanwhile, the mass-vaccination efforts in Phuket have been suspended until more vaccine doses arrive. They are expected at the end of this month.
The PPHO has reported that so far a total of 98,270 people in Phuket have received their first injection of the Chinese-made Sinovac vaccine ‘CoronaVac’.