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Thailand Reports First Health Worker to Contract Coronavirus

A new case of coronavirus was found on Friday, a first that affected health officials, bringing the total in the country to 34 since January.

Thai health officials have reported the first case of a health worker being infected by the coronavirus. The new case is a 35-year-old woman, who got the disease from contact with a patient.

Dr Suwanchai Wattanayingcharoenchia, the director-general of the Department of Disease Control, told a news conference the case brings the total coronavirus case in the country to 34 since January. Fourteen people have recovered and returned home.

Over 1,500 people in China have died from the virus but Thailand has not recorded a fatality so far.

Health personnel are one of the most vulnerable groups. Bejing revealed on Friday 1,716 medical workers have been infected during the outbreak, with six dying from the illness.

Most of the infections among health workers were in Hubei’s capital, Wuhan, where many have lacked proper masks and gear to protect themselves in hospitals dealing with a deluge of patients.

South Korea cancellations due to coronavirus

Meanwhile, Thailand’s tourism has received another blow as South Korean airlines suspend more flights to Thailand amid coronavirus fears. South Korea is also the second favourite destination for Thais, after Japan.

The decrease in flights came after the South Korean government issued a travel advisory to its citizens on Thursday.

The country’s Health and Welfare Ministry urged South Koreans to refrain from travelling to regions confirmed to have coronavirus cases.

The flight suspensions have dampened travel sentiment for tourists to Thailand. Many already booked tickets or those planning trips to South Korea in March and April.

Mr Thanapol said tour operators are 60-70% booked for Songkran in April. However the unfavorable conditions also mean Thais are likely to defer travel dates to avoid the risks.

“Many Thais are not in the mood to travel, with some still pondering their destination choices,” he said. “Tour operators must try harder to offer customers less problematic routes.


Source: Bangkok Post

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