By NewsDesk  @infectiousdiseasenews

Since the COVID-19 outbreak was first recognized around the beginning of the year, Thailand health officials have reported 35 confirmed cases, including two patients in critical condition. No deaths have been reported.

Image/Robert Herriman

From 3-23 January 2020, the Department of Disease Control (DDC) has been implementing its surveillance protocol by fever screening of travelers from all direct flights from Wuhan, China to the Suvarnabhumi, Don Mueang, Chiang Mai, Phuket and Krabi airports.

On 24 January, the screening protocol began to be implemented at Chiang Rai Airport. The accumulated data, until 21 February 2020, showed 1,419 flights and 191,006 passengers and air crew members from China were screened for the disease. For the screening protocol outside the airports, there were 7,812 people from 411 ships arriving from affected areas that were screened at six sea ports (Bangkok, Laem Chabang, Chiang Saen, Phuket, Samui and Krabi) between January 1 and February 21, 2020.

The screening implementation at Suvarnabhumi Airport has also been applied among arrival travelers from all countries for both arrival and departure flights. From 29 January to 21 February 2020, an accumulated number of screening people was 2,146,851 and found 68 of those people met a case definition criteria of PUI.

There were 87,383 people screened at six seaports. Since February 1, 2020, there were 563,088 people that were screened at 34 ground ports. A total of 50,202 people renewing their passports at the Government Complex Commemorating His Majesty at Chaengwattana Road were also screened from 30 January to 20 February 2020.

On 22 January 2020, DDC, Ministry of Public Health (MOPH), Thailand scaled up the Emergency Operations Center to Level 3 to closely monitor the ongoing situation both at the national and international levels.

Surveillance and preparedness to respond to emerging infectious diseases have been enhanced in the government and private hospitals, and areas of tourist attractions.

On 23 January 2020, The Travel Alert for the coronavirus outbreak was raised to Level 3. The MOPH recommends that travelers avoid all non-essential travel to outbreak areas.

On 3 February 2020 a meeting of the National Committee for Emerging Infectious Disease Preparedness, Prevention and Response was convened by the Thai Prime Minister. He has instructed
all relevant agencies and all provinces to take all comprehensive measures to prevent COVID-19 in every part of the country. All provinces in Thailand were requested to regularly report the results of their work.