(Image for representation) Omicron variant has already entered Thailand Photograph:( Reuters )
Thailand has detected first locally transmitted case of Omicron infection
Thailand is considering reintroducing compulsory quarantine for foreign visitors coming into the country. This is being mulled to stem the spread of Omicron variant of coronavirus. Thailand's health ministry reported on Monday (December 20) that first case of Omicron infection arising from local transmission had been found in the country.
The first locally transmitted case was found in a Thai woman. The woman tested positive for Omicron infection after contracting the virus from her husband. Her husband is a Colombian who returned to Thailand from Nigeria in late November, a health ministry official told a daily briefing. The official added that both the husband and the wife had been fully vaccinated.
The public health ministry is likely to propose scrapping the quarantine waiver for vaccinated visitors. The rules may make hotel quarantine mandatory again. A 'sandbox' programme may also be implemented. This programme involves free movement in specific locations. Thai minister Anutin Charnvirakul gave more information about this.
The Thai minister's remarks come after Thailand reopened to foreign visitors in November, ending nearly 18 months of strict entry policies that contributed to a collapse in tourism, a key industry and economic driver that drew 40 million visitors in 2019.