Drive tourism transport safely in an endemic era

Thailand Moves Together: Drive Tourism Transportation Safely in an Endemic Era

Health Minister Leads ‘Thailand Moves Together’ Joins forces with business to safely advance tourism transport in endemic era

Deputy Prime Minister and Public Health Minister Anutin Charnvirakul chaired the meet-and-greet session “Thailand Moving Together: Hug, Eat, Fly, Travel, Live Together” and hosted a public hearing with operators from the tourism and transport sectors , which explored ways to transition the endemic phrase of Covid-19, allowing more and more tourists to enter the Kingdom. The easing of restrictions aims to boost the economy and allow the public to live safely with Covid, backed by adequate public health facilities and support.

Joining Mr. Anutin were: Saksayam Chidchob, Minister of Transport; Siraphop Duangsodsri, Advisor to the Minister of Tourism and Sports; dr Kiattiphum Wongrhit, Permanent Secretary, Department of Public Health; Chayatham Promsorn, Permanent Secretary, Department for Transport; and Chote Trachu, Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Tourism and Sports.

“The tourism and hospitality sector in Thailand has been living with the adversity caused by Covid-19 and the country’s shutdown for over two years,” said the Minister of Public Health. “The Ministry of Health is working closely together with the Ministry of Tourism and Sports and the Ministry of Transport to provide solutions to refocus pandemic controls to facilitate the country’s opening up. The Covid-19 situation is currently improving, with the number of cases and deaths falling steadily. This is thanks to the cooperation of the public and business owners in complying with the preventative measures and other restrictions including lockdown measures, shutting down services, providing social distancing areas, improving the ventilation system, providing vaccinations for employees and Covid testing for employees. These collaborations allow the Ministry of Health to propose further relaxation measures to facilitate tourism businesses.”

“From May 1, 2022, the government halted the Test & Go program for fully vaccinated tourists to freely enter the kingdom. As a result, more and more tourists are traveling to Thailand and catalyzing a positive economic recovery.”

“Therefore, as the transition from pandemic to endemic is expected to lead to increased tourist numbers in the Kingdom, the Ministry of Health organized a hearing with 22 representatives from associations and departments, including tourism, hospitality, restaurants and hotels. The Hearing and Resolution session aims to identify appropriate public health actions to be proposed to the Center for Covid-19 Situation Administration (CCSA) conference to enable comfort and reassurance for the tourism and transportation sectors and to support Thais to resume normality and living with Covid-19 safely.”

“The hearing session shows consensus between government and business in proposing policies for Thailand to emerge from the crisis based on public safety while boosting tourism and economy. Unnecessary restrictions will be eased to speed up the transition to the endemic phase. Prior notification to the Ministry of Tourism is required for entrepreneurs to create and adjust their plans. The Ministry of Transport and other relevant authorities are asked to quickly facilitate tourism convenience. The Ministry of Health is obliged to provide medical and public services, relaxation measures and to inform the public about the current situation and comply with it. For its part, the Ministry of Health has already provided comprehensive medical support, including beds, medicines, medical professionals, medical equipment and personal hygiene protection, to combat the Covid outbreaks.”

“While social measures have been relaxed, the most important factor is business owners working together to understand and follow the 2U policy, which includes: Universal Prevention; Preventing infection through social distancing, washing hands, wearing masks indoors and in crowded areas, and testing when in contact with high-risk groups and; universal vaccination; Ensuring the availability of booster vaccinations to increase safety. If all requirements are met and vaccinations are fully boosted as recommended, opening the country to tourists need no longer raise concerns about a new outbreak. Even if infection occurs, severe symptoms or death are not major threats.”

“The Ministry of Public Health adheres to the framework of HEALTH FOR WEALTH, which includes cultivating the public health system to help Thailand’s development and economic growth. The vision is not one-dimensional: Thailand’s public health system helps to stimulate and encourage business and investment. Herbal and cannabis product development is one of the models being used to promote domestic medical treatment and export, while making the country a global medical hub that attracts health tourism travelers.”

“The Ministry of Health believes that strong health care development is a key factor for positive economic and social development. The safety of Thais is ensured by quality public health.”

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