Thai PM Self-Isolates After Contact With Covid-19 Patient

Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha has decided to self-isolate at home for a week after coming into close contact with a person who tested positive for COVID-19.

It was confirmed that he had contact with the infected person during Thursday’s events to mark the reopening of Phuket’s resort island to fully vaccinated international travelers under the Sandbox scheme.

However, it is not yet known whether the prime minister caught the virus since he had just been tested, said government spokesman Anucha Burapachaisri.

Gen Prayut, who received both doses of the AstraZeneca vaccine, will continue working and carry out his duties as usual, closely following developments and monitoring the COVID-19 situation, Anucha added.

He decided to stay home after Veerasak Pisanuwong, the Surin Chamber of Commerce chairman, confirmed that he had tested positive for the virus.

Veerasak Pisanuwong met with General Prayut at Phuket’s reopening ceremony on July 1 to welcome the first group of tourists to arrive on the island with no quarantine requirements, and the two took a selfie together.

Gen Prayut and several of his cabinet ministers visited the tourist destination to mark the start of the sandbox program, which is expected to reactivate the economy and gradually reopen the country.

He will stay in his residence, located within the 11th Infantry Regiment compound in Bangkok’s Bang Khen district, until he undergoes a COVID-19 test and gets a negative result.

Gen Prayut’s isolation announcement comes as Thailand is hit by the third wave of infections, dominated by the more contagious Alpha and Delta strains.