BANGKOK, April 18 – The Ministry of Public Health will not declare COVID-19 an endemic disease on July 1, according to Public Health Minister Anutin Charnvirakul.
Mr Anutin who is also a deputy prime minister said the ministry earlier planned to officially define COVID-19 as an endemic disease on July 1 but the change would not happen as anticipated regarding the numbers of new cases and fatalities for the time being.
Therefore, the ministry would just prepare the endemic disease declaration and would make it official when the situation was promising, he said.
Mr Anutin said he expected new COVID-19 cases would not soar within two weeks after the Songkran festival. However, he assured that the Ministry of Public Health already prepared medical supplies including the antiviral drug favipiravir to cope with a possible surge in COVID-19 cases after the festival.
Mr Anutin also said that the government would have to further ease disease control measures to support economic recovery.
He admitted that compulsory RT-PCR tests for COVID-19 on visitors would be finally revoked as the Ministry of Tourism and Sports proposed.
If the national health system could handle COVID-19 cases related to the Songkran festival, disease controls would then be relaxed to restore business and activities at their pre-COVID levels as soon as possible, Mr Anutin said. (TNA)