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Bangkok to Setup Covid-19 “Swab Hubs” to Test Tourists

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Bangkok to Setup Covid-19 "Swab Hubs" to Test Tourists

Bangkok’s Governor said the city is set to reopen to fully vaccinated foreign visitors and Covid-19 “swab hubs” are being set up to test tourists upon their arrival in the capital.

Bangkok governor Pol Gen Aswin Kwanmuang said that the central government has laid down a policy to reopen Thailand on Nov 1 and testing and quarantine measures are required.

He said the capital city will be shortening nighttime curfew hours starting on Saturday. Bangkok’s City Hall is waiting for the official announcement of the relaxing of covid-19 curbs to be published in the Royal Gazette. He also said details regarding New Years’ countdown events will then be discussed.

A spokesman said that City Hall has put in place measures to welcome back foreign visitors in line with Thailand’s reopening plan. Bangkok also needs to work to prevent transmissions among residents and foreign visitors. Because of this City Hall will set up Covid-19 screening points in the capital, similar to Phuket.

Only testing Tourists

In Phuket, screening points are set up at hotels, however, City Hall plans to set up swab hubs across the city to carry out swab tests on foreign visitors. The tourist will then be quarantined at their hotels and must wait for the results of the RT-PCR tests to come back. He did not say if random RT-PCR tests would be conducted on Thai nationals.

Measures will also be put into place to contain possible covid-19 transmissions at night entertainment venues. The venues may be allowed to resume operations on Dec 1, 2021. Covid-19 safety measures include carrying out rapid antigen tests and administering vaccines in Bangkok’s popular tourist hot spots.

Meanwhile, the Centre for Covid-19 Situation Administration (CCSA) announced that it has come up with a host of strategies for the safe reopening of Thailand.

On Friday the CCSA discussed a proposal by the Foreign Affairs Ministry for vaccinated foreign visitors who have had an RT-PCR test before arrival to use the Thailand Plus tracing app instead of the certificate of entry (CoE).

The CCSA added that this will reduce their time of seeking permission to enter Thailand from 3-6 to 1-3 days.

Northern Thailand reopening

In Thailand’s northern capital Chiang Mai governor Prachon Pratchsakul has also welcomed the central government’s Nov 1 reopening plan. He said the northern province will welcome back foreign tourists despite some new covid-19 clusters detected recently.

He said that he was confident that the cluster will be brought under control before the reopening date.

On Monday, Thailand’s Prime Minister Prayut announced the government would reopen the country to fully vaccinated tourists from low-risk countries with no quarantine on Nov 1. The announcement was seen as a key effort to restart Thailand’s sagging economy.

The government has also eased additional covid-19 curbs, including shortening nighttime curfew hours.

Source: Bangkok Post

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