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A survey by the Education Ministry found that the majority of parents are concerned about the side effects of Pfizer Covid-19 vaccination in young children.
From Feb 14-18, the Education Ministry conducted a nationwide online survey of 26,793 parents of children aged five to 12 years. Of them, 65.1% were concerned about the possible side effects of the Pfizer vaccine.
Among respondents, 17.5% were concerned about responsibility for unwanted symptoms in vaccinated children. This was followed by 7% about vaccine efficacy, 4.9% about their children’s health prior to vaccination, and 0.3% about difficult vaccination procedures, while 5.2% had no concerns.
In the survey, 58.6% of respondents wanted their children vaccinated, 22.6% did not, and 18.8% remained undecided.
When asked where they would prefer to have their vaccinations administered, 60.8% said schools, 29.1% said hospitals and 10.1% said service units.
Of the parents asked about the preferred Covid-19 testing methods for their children, 71.8% preferred saliva testing, 23.9% preferred nasal swabs, 2.2% preferred blood testing, and 2.1% did not want any tests.
Cases raised Despite Pfizer Covid-19 Vaccinations
Meanwhile, many provinces report spikes in Covid-19 cases, with Nakhon Ratchasima’s situation deemed serious due to a shortage of beds.
The Centre for the Covid-19 Situation Administration (CCSA) reported only 14 provinces recorded fewer new cases on Sunday than the previous week.
There were also case surges in other provinces during the week, from a slight increase to a big jump in Trat and Nong Khai.
The number of cases in Trat doubled from nine on Feb 14 to 40 on Sunday, while those in Nong Khai doubled from 71 to 147 in the same period.
The number of Omicron cases in Nakhon Ratchasima increased from 567 on Feb 14 to 718 on Sunday, a record high. Numbers in Chiang Mai increased from 253 to 314.
Nakhon Ratchasima’s provincial communicable disease committee warned of a looming shortage of beds amid an increase in infections on Monday.
Family-Related Cases of Omicron
At the main hospital in the province, Maharat Nakhon Ratchasima Hospital, there were only 26 beds left to serve new severely ill patients. Approximately 450 beds were available in normal and field hospitals for patients with less serious symptoms, with 2,280 beds already occupied.
According to the provincial health office in Chiang Mai, the province had enough beds for patients but expressed concern about the growing number of family-related cases. The infection rate is expected to peak within two weeks.
Health officials in Surin warned Monday that the tambon hospital had too few beds after a cluster was detected during a school sports day in Phanom Dong Rak district on Thursday.
Nattaphat Boonme, chief of the Bakdai TAO, has confirmed that 60 students and 10 others were infected with the Omicron variant by a single student who caught it at home.
The school was closed and turned into an isolation center for infected students and others.
Coronavirus spikes are generally linked to social gatherings, according to the Public Health Ministry.
Omicron cases expanding
According to the Public Health Ministry’s report issued on Monday, 32 more Covid-19 cases were reported during the previous 24 hours, along with 18,883 new cases.
On Sunday morning, there were 30 Coronavirus-related deaths and 18,953 new cases reported.
Dr. Apisamai Srirangson, the spokesperson for the Center for Covid-19 Situation Administration, said in the afternoon briefing that the 32 latest coronavirus-related fatalities ranged in age from 28 to 92.
A total of 19 of them, or 60%, were not vaccinated. The remaining eight, or 25%, had received two vaccine doses over four months ago. In the past four months, 5 individuals had received two doses, but had not had their third shot,” she said.
A total of 18,618 local Covid-19 infections were confirmed in hospitals and 86 were confirmed by mass testing.
The majority of new cases are occurring in provinces that are either fully or partially reopened as tourism pilot zones, Dr. Apisamai said.
She advised people against travelling to parties, saying that new cases are rising and that the majority of new clusters originate from restaurants and bars that sell alcohol.
For the time being, however, lockdown measures are not likely since the government must support the economy, the spokeswoman said.
There have been 2,731,198 cases since the pandemic started in early 2020, including 507,763 cases this year, with 2,542,145 Complete recoveries.
To date, 22,656 people have died since the outbreak began, including 958 so far this year.
Globally, Covid-19 cases increased by 1.28 million in 24 hours to 424.99 million. Deaths worldwide increased by 5,278 to 5.90 million. U.S. cases rose by 15.056 to 80.08 million, and deaths went up by 282 to 959,412.
According to Dr. Apisamai, new cases are declining in America and Europe, while they are increasing in Asia.
Having accumulated 2.73 million cases, Thailand ranked 32nd.