Govt may consider reopening some virus free areas, says expert


Dr Chalermchai Boonyaleepun, vice president of the Public Health Committee, said on Friday (April 24) that the government should consider lifting restrictions in some districts that have been free of new Covid-19 infections for the past 28 days. 

However, he said, before easing any lockdown measures, the government should ensure that there will not be a spike in new infections. 

“Meanwhile, all sectors will still have to follow preventive measures such at the same time as maintaining social distances, wearing masks, refraining from gatherings and washing hands regularly,” he said. 

“If the number of Covid-19 patients is likely to increase, then the government must put in place even stricter measures.” 

He said that if reopening some districts was far too risky, then the government can consider easing restrictions on some activities that pose a low risk of infection. 

“The government should also issue additional measures to mitigate risks, such as screening people constantly,” he said. 

He added that people’s behaviour will have to be changed in the long term because this disease may last for at least one year if not up to five years. 

“This outbreak has had and would have an impact on people’s daily lives. If, for example, it is found later that the virus can be transmitted in a space of four metres, then people will have to maintain a distance of at least four metres from each other. 

“This new normal will hit all aspects of life, comprising economy, health, culture and even the very philosophy of life.