Thailand reports 53 new COVID-19 cases, one new death

BANGKOK (CNA) – Thailand reported 53 new COVID-19 cases and the death of a 48-year-old Thai man who was infected with the virus along with four other family members.

Of the new cases reported yesterday, three were linked to previous cases, one had no known links, and 42 are migrant workers who have been under quarantine at an immigration detention centre in the southern province of Songkhla.

Seven other new cases were reported from the southern province of Yala, where authorities are aggressively testing the population because of high infection rates there, said a spokesman for the government’s Centre for COVID-19 Situation Administration, Taweesin Wisanuyothin.

Since the outbreak escalated in January, Thailand reported a total of 2,907 cases and 51 deaths, while 2,547 patients have recovered and gone home.

On Wednesday, a one-month-old Thai baby successfully recovered from COVID-19. Four antiviral drugs were used to cure the baby, and the medication was given to him for 10 days.

The Thai Chamber of Commerce said the country’s job losses may reach 10 million if the coronavirus outbreak continues for a few months.

“We think about seven million jobs have been lost already, and the figure will hit 10 million if the outbreak drags on for two to three months,” said the head of the council.

Thailand imposed a nationwide night curfew, having closed malls and discouraged activities to limit the spread.

The central bank has forecast the economy will contract 5.3 per cent this year, which would be the weakest performance since the 1998 Asian financial crisis.

People walk on a rooftop of a building as dark clouds gather in Bangkok, Thailand. PHOTO: AP