Thailand extends Covid-19 screening to visitors from S'pore & Japan

Thais have also been urged to postpone their visits to Singapore.

Matthias Ang| February 18, 08:49 PM

Thailand has extended its coronavirus (Covid-19) screening measures to visitors from Singapore and Japan, the Bangkok Post reported.

On Feb. 17, the permanent secretary for Thailand's Public Health Ministry, Sukhum Kanchanapimai, stated that intensive screening measures used for passengers from mainland China, Hong Kong and Taiwan, would be extended to these two countries.

As per Sukhum:

"We have expanded our intensive screening to travellers from Japan and Singapore. The screening method will be the same one used on passengers from Wuhan."

Visitors from Singapore who show symptoms urged to proceed to the hospital

Sukhum further urged arrivals from Singapore and Japan to proceed to Thailand's Bamrasnaradura Infectious Diseases Institute or other hospitals to be checked for Covid-19, should they develop a fever or respiratory problems within 14 days of entering the country.

Thai media The Nation quoted Sukhum as stating that such travellers will meet doctors and receive treatment free-of-charge.

Meanwhile, NHK World News reported that such visitors from Japan and Singapore will be quarantined at government hospitals, should they display symptoms.

Thais urged to postpone their trips to Singapore and Japan

The Nation further reported that the Public Health Ministry also urged Thais to postpone their visits to both Singapore and Japan, as a result of the rise in cases.

Sukhum further stated that the situation in both countries had reached the point where local people who had no contact with mainland Chinese had been infected.

Passengers from MS Westerdam barred from entering Thailand

Separately, Thailand's Public Health Minister, Anutin Charnvirakul, announced that all passengers from the MS Westerdam cruise ship, with the exception of Thai nationals, will be banned from entering the country, CNN reported.

This ban will last for 14 days, starting from Feb. 14.

The Bangkok Post highlighted that the decision was made after a passenger from the ship was confirmed to have Covid-19 during a check in Malaysia.

The ship had been stranded for almost two weeks after being declined entry in Thailand, Japan, Taiwan, Guam and the Philippines.

It was finally allowed to dock at Cambodia on Feb. 13.

Anutin added that he also had ordered all Thai airlines to not issue boarding passes to the ship's passengers for 14 days.

Should any airline that break the new regulation, they would have to bear responsibility for the damage incurred.

Thus far, Thailand has 35 cases of Covid-19.

A 60-year-old Chinese woman from Wuhan, whose family members had also contracted the virus earlier, was recorded as a new case on Feb. 17.

Top photo by MLADEN ANTONOV/AFP via Getty Images