The Thai Government will launch a new program next week with the aim of testing at least 100,000 people for the covid-19 virus nationwide before the end of June.
The directive came from Public Health Minister, Anutin Charnvirakul, with the aim of the tests to increase the government’s ability to gauge patterns of the infection before the panned end of lockdown restrictions on July 1st.
The tests will primarily focus on two “high-risk” groups – people who work in areas or locations that could expose them to the virus, including health workers and public transport drivers, and those who live in crowded communities where social distancing is difficult to maintain.
The exact locations for the second group – those in crowded communities – has not yet been finalized, however, Samut Sakhon, where there is a large concentration of migrant workers and prisons, has been put forward as an option.
The program has already launched in some provinces including Korat, Pattani, and Surat Thani, where the presence of laboratories allows tests to be concluded quickly.
To date, the government has mostly focused on testing people who had previously come into contact with an infected patient.
By implementing broader criteria for testing people, laboratories will be able to produce more reliable data concerning the virus.
Source: Bangkok Post