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Eight Thai Returning form Saudi Arabia Infected with Omicron

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Eight Thai Returning form Saudi Arabia Infected with Omicron

After returning from the Muslim holy city of Mecca in Saudi Arabia, eight Thai men tested positive for the variant of the Omicron coronavirus. In the wake of the imported cases, authorities have urged people not to panic, as those infected have been quarantined.

Their quarantine took place at a Bangkok hospital (hotel-hospital) on Ramkhamhaeng 5. Seven of the patients tested positive for Omicron, doctors said, adding that doctors conducted the tests.

Furthermore, doctors reported that six people have close contact with the seven and are at high risk. They have all been quarantined at the hospital as well.

Returnees left Saudi Arabia and flew to Qatar, where they transited before arriving at Suvarnabhumi airport on Sunday.

Omicron symptoms began in Suadi Arabia

In Saudi Arabia, some people had already begun to experience flu-like symptoms from the Omicron variant. The Thai returnees are from various provinces, including Nonthaburi and Ayutthaya.

Kusak Kukiatkul, director of the Phuket public health office, said another group of 137 Thai pilgrims who returned from Mecca were tested for the disease on Dec 13. A total of five individuals tested positive for Covid-19 and were quarantined for five days.

Dr Kusak said the five, who were classified as green patients with mild or no symptoms after quarantine, were allowed to undergo further treatment in hospitals in other southern provinces under close surveillance by health authorities.

However, on Dec 17, Phuket’s centre for medical sciences confirmed that one of the five returnees had tested positive for Omicron. Dr Kusak said the patient is now quarantined and being treated at Khok Pho Hospital in Pattani.

The test results for Omicron were also positive on Dec. 17 for four foreign tourists in Phuket. They arrived on four different airlines and entered Phuket using the Test & Go program. Their nationalities are German, American, Swede, and Tunisian.

Imported cases of Omicron

Dr Kusak said all four have been quarantined and are being treated in a hospital in Phuket, adding that around 20 other people who had contact with the four have also been quarantined.

The 137 Thai returnees, according to Pattani’s public health doctor Anurak Saraphap, were tested in Saudi Arabia by RT-PCR before flying to Phuket to undergo further testing.

Furthermore, he urged residents of Pattani not to panic over the imported case of Omicron, but to continue taking precautions against the virus. A Pattani public health official also confirmed that the Omicron patient in quarantine at Khok Pho Hospital is not a local case.

There are also concerns about the possible spread of the Omicron variant from Thai returnees from Malaysia, according to local sources. Currently, around 57 Thai returnees from Malaysia are in quarantine, but no Omicron infections have been found among them.

In response, provincial authorities have increased screening of arrivals from foreign countries to prevent the spread of the Omicron variant, according to the sources.

On Sunday, Thailand’s Public Health Ministry announced 2,899 new Covid-19 cases and 22 more deaths in the previous 24 hours.

The CTNNews editorial team comprises seasoned journalists and writers dedicated to delivering accurate, timely news coverage. They possess a deep understanding of current events, ensuring insightful analysis. With their expertise, the team crafts compelling stories that resonate with readers, keeping them informed on global happenings.

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