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Update January, 2020

Thailand News
Travel Tourism
Health & Wellbeing
Science & Technology
Update by Natrakorn Paewsoongnern
Health & Wellbeing

Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19) outbreak still at second stage in Thailand

BANGKOK (TNA) The Thai government says the coronavirus outbreak in the country is still at the 2nd stage after the biggest daily jump of 32 new cases were reported on Sunday.

The new Covid-19 cases have brought the country’s total cases to 114 since January, with 78 active cases.

Among the 32 cases, nine visited a boxing stadium in Bangkok, three had contacts with tourists in a restaurant at the Suvarnabhumi International Airport and one was a civil servant who was infected while on duty in Spain, according to Dr. Sukhum Kanchanapimai, permanent secretary to the Ministry of Public Health.

After new infections have been linked to public places, the government has considered suspending stadium, university classes, theaters and other public gatherings, sources say.

The government has already cancelled Songkran or Thai traditional New Year holidays between April 13 and 15.

In an attempt to prevent a wider outbreak in the tourism-reliant nation, the Public Health Ministry plans to a database of public places linked with infections.  Dr. Sukhum said this would help people to make necessary precautions.

Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha has led officials in daily meeting of a special taskforce on the coronavirus.  Related agencies updated on the situation, new disease control measures and other actions to ease the impacts on the country’s economy.

Meanwhile the Royal Thai Army confirmed that one of those catching the virus at the boxing stadium is chief of the Army Welfare Department.

Gen Nathaphon Srisawat, special adviser to the army, said on Monday that Maj Gen RachitArunrangsi, director-general of the Army Welfare Department, was infected while visiting the boxing stadium.

He had been treated at Phramongkutklao Hospital while 60 people in close contact with him had been in self-quarantine at homes, Gen Nathaphon said. (TNA)

Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) Situation – Countries, areas or territories with cases

Confirmed cases: 168,019

Deaths: 6,610

Countries, areas or territories with cases: 148

Last updated: 3/16/2020 16:00 CET

Countries, areas or territories with cases

China :81077 cases

Italy :24747 cases

Iran (Islamic Republic of) :14991 cases

Republic of Korea :8236 cases

Spain :7753 cases

France :5380 cases

Germany :4838 cases

Switzerland :2200 cases

United States of America :1678 cases

Netherlands :1413 cases

The United Kingdom :1395 cases

Norway :1169 cases

Belgium :1085 cases

Sweden :992 cases

Austria :959 cases

Denmark :898 cases

Japan :814 cases

International conveyance (Diamond Princess) :712 cases

Malaysia :553 cases

Qatar :401 cases

Australia :336 cases

Greece :331 cases

Canada :304 cases

Czechia :298 cases

Finland :272 cases

Israel :250 cases

Portugal :245 cases

Singapore :243 cases

Bahrain :221 cases

Slovenia :219 cases

Estonia :205 cases

Brazil :200 cases

Ireland :169 cases

Romania :158 cases

Poland :150 cases

Thailand :147 cases

Philippines :140 cases

Iceland :138 cases

Indonesia :134 cases

Egypt :126 cases

Iraq :124 cases

India :114 cases

Kuwait :112 cases

Saudi Arabia :103 cases

Lebanon :99 cases

United Arab Emirates :98 cases

San Marino :92 cases

Chile :75 cases

Peru :71 cases

Russian Federation :63 cases

Slovakia :61 cases

Viet Nam :57 cases

Argentina :56 cases

Mexico :53 cases

Pakistan :52 cases

Bulgaria :51 cases

South Africa :51 cases

Brunei Darussalam :50 cases

Algeria :49 cases

Croatia :49 cases

Serbia :46 cases

Panama :43 cases

Albania :42 cases

occupied Palestinian territory :39 cases

Luxembourg :38 cases

Ecuador :37 cases

Belarus :36 cases

Latvia :34 cases

Cyprus :33 cases

Georgia :33 cases

Hungary :32 cases

Morocco :28 cases

Armenia :26 cases

Senegal :26 cases

Colombia :24 cases

Costa Rica :23 cases

Republic of Moldova :23 cases

Oman :22 cases

Malta :21 cases

Azerbaijan :19 cases

Sri Lanka :19 cases

Bosnia and Herzegovina :18 cases

Tunisia :18 cases

Afghanistan :16 cases

Martinique :15 cases

Maldives :13 cases

North Macedonia :13 cases

Cambodia :12 cases

Bolivia (Plurinational State of) :11 cases

Faroe Islands :11 cases

Jamaica :10 cases

Lithuania :9 cases

Monaco :9 cases

Réunion :9 cases

Paraguay :8 cases

French Guiana :7 cases

Liechtenstein :7 cases

Guadeloupe :6 cases

Jordan :6 cases

Kazakhstan :6 cases

New Zealand :6 cases

Bangladesh :5 cases

Cameroon :5 cases

Dominican Republic :5 cases

Rwanda :5 cases

Turkey :5 cases

Cuba :4 cases

Guyana :4 cases

Seychelles :4 cases

Uruguay :4 cases

Uzbekistan :4 cases

Burkina Faso :3 cases

Cote d Ivoire :3 cases

French Polynesia :3 cases

Kenya :3 cases

Puerto Rico :3 cases

Saint Barthelemy :3 cases

Ukraine :3 cases

Andorra :2 cases

Curacao :2 cases

Democratic Republic of the Congo :2 cases

Ghana :2 cases

Honduras :2 cases

Jersey :2 cases

Namibia :2 cases

Nigeria :2 cases

Saint Martin :2 cases

Trinidad and Tobago :2 cases

Venezuela (Bolivarian Republic of) :2 cases

Antigua and Barbuda :1cases

Bhutan :1cases

Cayman Islands :1cases

Central African Republic :1cases

Congo :1cases

Equatorial Guinea :1cases

Eswatini :1cases

Ethiopia :1cases

Gabon :1cases

Gibraltar :1cases

Guernsey :1cases

Guinea :1cases

Holy See :1cases

Mauritania :1cases

Mayotte :1cases

Mongolia :1cases

Nepal :1cases

Saint Vincent and the Grenadines :1cases

Sudan :1cases

Togo :1cases


* ‘Confirmed’ cases reported between 13 and19 February 2020 include both laboratory-confirmed and clinically diagnosed (only applicable to Hubei province); for all other dates, only laboratory-confirmed cases are shown.

The boundaries and names are shown and the designations used on this map do not imply the expression of any opinion whatsoever on the part of the World Health Organization concerning the legal status of any country, territory, city or area or of its authorities, or concerning the delimitation of its frontiers or boundaries. Dotted and dashed lines on maps represent approximate border lines for which there may not yet be full agreement.

Data source: WHO, National Health Commission of the People’s Republic of China

Medical errors still harm too many people but there are glimpses of real change

Michael L. Millenson, Northwestern University

(The Conversation) In late November 1999, a TV producer called me about an alarming report that 44,000 to 98,000 Americans were being killed each year by preventable errors in hospitals and another 1 million were being injured.


Could that be true? Based on my research, I replied, the estimate seemed low.

The To Err is Human report from the Institute of Medicine has been called a “seminal moment” in the patient safety fight. The public furor sparked by the group’s assertion that medical mistakes were deadlier than breast cancer, auto accidents or AIDS prompted new laws, as well as vows to meet the Institute of Medicine’s goal of cutting medical errors in half in five years.

Twenty years after the report’s release, how safe is our medical care?

Your local hospital is almost certainly much more dangerous than it could be. The latest research says the “frequency of preventable harm remains high,” and danger in the doctor’s office and other outpatient settings is only now starting to be addressed.

But the good news, based on my research in this field, is that almost all hospitals are making some progress, while a small number of institutions have committed themselves to zero harm, providing hard evidence that care can be made far safer.

Changing a culture

Over the years, the definition of what constitutes a medical error has become both more precise, as detection methods have improved, and more expansive. The simplest approach to understanding the different types of treatment-caused harm is to look at two categories. The first type of error happens when the doctor or nurse’s intent was correct, but something went wrong – a medication overdose, a preventable infection, a sponge left in the patient’s body after surgery. The second kind of error is one of intent – the wrong diagnosis, for instance. The Institute of Medicine report mostly (though not exclusively) focused on the first kind of error and pointed to the direction hospitals should take. For years, few chose that road.

“When I said I was going to eliminate preventable injuries and deaths, people looked at me like I was a crazy,” a physician leader who started his health system down the “zero harm” path more than a decade ago told me when I interviewed him for this article. “But the whole history of medical progress is doing just that.”

The Institute of Medicine report relied on studies from the 1980s, as did my methodologically cruder estimate of 180,000 deaths in a 1997 book. Newer research with varying definitions and measurement methods has produced varying conclusions. The closest to an “official” estimate may be a statement by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services in its current strategic plan that “preventable medical errors potentially take 200,000 or more American lives each year.”

Based on that figure, the 346 people killed in the crashes of two Boeing 737 Max jets within six months in 2018 and 2019 is equivalent to those dying from hospital-caused harm in a little over half a day.

Unlike airline crashes, of course, treatment-caused harm is mostly invisible to the public. The occasional newsworthy scandal only leaves the mistaken impression that “bad” doctors and nurses are to blame when something goes wrong.

But as a physician who lost a loved one to medical error wrote on HuffPost, dangerous care persists because “genuinely caring and often highly expert people” work in a system that “devolves into routine and dangerous dysfunction.” It is the very routineness of that dysfunction that can blind clinicians and staff to its consequences.

“Nobody goes to work in the morning to harm a patient,” is a health care truism. Yet a national survey of hospital patient safety culture found that 40% of respondents agreed that “hospital management seems interested in patient safety only after an adverse event happens.” Perhaps coincidentally, 43% of hospitals earned a “C,” “D” or “F” grade in the latest report from the Leapfrog Group, a nonprofit that publishes patient safety report cards on individual hospitals.

The challenge with regard to patient harm is changing from a culture that sees “inevitability” to one that is passionate about “preventability.”

Pockets of progress

The public impact of the To Err revelations receded long ago. Today’s spotlight shines on surprise medical bills, daunting drug prices and holes in health insurance. Still, 20 years’ time is a generation, and in today’s generation, there are glimpses of significant change.

In contrast to the silence that persisted for so long, groups such as the American College of Healthcare Executives, the American Hospital Association, the Joint Commission (the nation’s largest hospital accreditation group) and others are explicitly confronting the imperative to eliminate all harm. Hospital collaboratives organized by the federal government and others are providing guidance.

Most importantly, in my opinion, hospitals on the zero harm journey are sharing their stories, providing proof that aspiration can become implementation. Their ranks are not large, but they include institutions like Titusville, Florida’s Parrish Medical Center, which has not had a death from ventilator-related pneumonia in a dozen years; the Ascension Health system, which has meticulously documented its yearly progress toward eliminating all preventable injuries and deaths in more than 60 hospitals; and St. Louis’ BJC HealthCare, which actually did reduce patient harm by over half in just five years, and then by 75% in 10 years, a success that contrasts sharply with the national results.

The leaders of these efforts describe a slow and painful culture change process. But it is nowhere near as painful as watching, as I have, a mother recount how her nine-year-old daughter died from a series of medical mistakes in a hospital where the mom had taken her child to save her life.

For the sake of our families, friends and ourselves, it’s time for community leaders to challenge local hospitals to understand that a different path is both urgent and possible.


HEADLINES [click on headline to view story]

Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19) outbreak still at second stage in Thailand

Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) Situation – Countries, areas or territories with cases

Medical errors still harm too many people but there are glimpses of real change