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Avoid hosting public events like political rallies, says disease control official

Feb 22. 2020
Dr Thanarak Phaliphat
Dr Thanarak Phaliphat
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By The Nation

The Department of Disease Control has urged organisers to desist from holding political rallies and public events because of the threat of the Covid-19 virus.

The deputy director-general of the department, Dr Thanarak Phaliphat, on Saturday (February 22) cited the 2020 MotoGP in Buriram province and a proposed political rally. He said these kinds of events will draw a lot of people, as well as increase the risk of infection.

“This depends on the organisers and participants whether they are able to deal with this risk,” he said. “Things that organisers can do are asking people to not participate if they have a cough or sore throat like a cold, and screening people who have symptoms away from the event venue.”

He suggested that the organisers screen people and give away face masks to protect themselves, while they must set up sanitising points for washing hands.

“In addition, officials in each area must monitor tourists whether there are patients. If there is, they should advise them to receive treatment as soon as possible. These methods are universal precaution standards,” he said.

He advised that this was not the right time to hold a political rally because people may get infected by the virus. Therefore, he recommended finding other ways.

“If the organisers prioritise people’s health, we advise postponing the rally or doing other activities instead,” he added. “But if they want to go ahead with the rally, they must also screen people.”

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