Strain On Hospitals As More Medical Staff Quarantined

Tassana Boonthong
Thailand Nursing and Midwifery Council president, Tassana Boonthong

An average of 20-30 medical personnel in at least 17 hospitals in Bangkok have been declared at risk of COVID-19 and put in quarantine.

Thailand Nursing and Midwifery Council president, Tassana Boonthong, said doctors and nurses were having to work much longer shifts during the pandemic because an average of 20-30 medical workers per hospital being forced into quarantine.

“Some 17 hospitals in Bangkok have quarantined doctors and nurses. The highest number working in one hospital is 78,” she said.

The problem of quarantined medical personnel has led to overwork and shortages, according to Ms Boonthong. Some hospitals only have one nurse per 100 patients compared to one per 20 before the pandemic, she said before issuing an appeal for people to volunteer in hospitals to help battle the COVID-19 crisis.

Many hospitals in other provinces have also quarantined medical personnel and other hospital staff. In Nakhon Pathom, Sam Pran Hospital announced the temporary closure of its operating theatres from 27th April – 10th May after it was revealed a COVID-19 patient had a contact history at the hospital. At least 40 medical staff at the hospital were quarantined.

At Maharaj Nakhon Si Thammarat Hospital in Korat, 10 emergency care nurses were quarantined because a COVID-19 infected patient did not previously tell the hospital he had been in areas where they worked.

In Khon Kaen, 105 medical staff at Khon Kaen Hospital were quarantined for 14 days after coming into close contact with an infected patient.