THE Secretary-General of the National Security Council (NSC) closed the door on a new lockdown amid a surge in Covid-19 patients with today’s (Feb. 24) tally being 23,557 cases and 38 deaths, Naewna newspaper said.
Gen. Supot Malaniyom, speaking as head of operations at the Centre for Covid-19 Situation Administration, said it would be difficult to go back to a lockdown like during the initial stage of the pandemic except for utmost necessity which he did not expect to occur.
He added that adjustment had to be made by all sides including the public and entrepreneurs with focus on maintaining a preventive lifestyle.
Regarding putting off downgrading Covid-19 from the list of ailments covered by the Universal Coverage for Emergency Patients (UCEP) scheme with those not in critical condition having to go to the hospital they are assigned to according to their medical benefit scheme for free treatment, Gen. Supot said a clarification by the Public Health Ministry is pending.
Asked whether the adjustment of UCEP is linked to the national budget, Gen. Supot said where the budget for taking care of Covid is concerned the authorities look at the big picture, even if expenditure mounted, if it was needed it would have to be met.
Earlier the Public Health Ministry said today’s 23,557 Covid cases took the cumulative confirmed total since the start of the pandemic to 2,794,350. Another 22,240 people tested positive via ATK but are awaiting confirmation by PCR test with this total not included in the daily tally.
An additional 16,131 patients were cured taking total recoveries from the onset of the pandemic to 2,590,589 with 180,993 still undergoing treatment.
Today’s 38 fatalities raised the death toll to 22,768.
Altogether 122,520,665 doses of vaccines have been administered so far.
Meanwhile today’s list of top-10 worst-hit provinces is as follows:
1) Bangkok, 3,236 new infections;
2) Chonburi, 1,250;
3) Samut Prakan, 994;
4) Nakhon Si Thammarat, 899;
5) Nonthaburi, 875;
6) Samut Sakhon, 790;
7) Ratchaburi, 666;
8) Phuket, 645;
9) Rayong, 642;
10) Nakhon Ratchasima 629.
Bangkok’s total of 3,236 cases is an increase from 3,079 yesterday while Chonburi saw its tally dip slightly from 1,369 yesterday to 1,250 today but Samut Prakan’s count increased from 990 yesterday to 994 today.
Top: Covid testing at a Bangkok community. Photo: NNT
Home Page: Gen. Supot Malaniyom. Photo: Naewna