Thai Cabinet approves new Communicable Diseases Act amendment hinh anh 1Thailand's Deputy Government Spokesperson Traisuree Taisaranakul. (Photo: NNT)

Bangkok (NNT/VNA) - The Thai Cabinet has approved a draft amendment of the Communicable Diseases Act to enable more effective operations to control COVID-19.

The new draft includes penalty for persons who purposefully withhold information on their symptoms and diseases to health officials.

Deputy Government Spokesperson Traisuree Taisaranakul announced that members of the Cabinet approved a draft amendment of the Communicable Diseases Act BE 2558, in order to enhance the legal measures necessary to help control the COVID-19 pandemic, as well as any future diseases.

This draft amendment gives more authority to government officials, as well as penalties for violations. With the new amendment, the Director General of the Department of Disease Control can announce an area or a port outside Thailand as an outbreak area in cases of great urgency to prevent the spread into the country, while the Minister of Public Health will have the authority to determine the collection, access, storage, usage, and management, or the sharing of personal data from the patients or suspected patients of a communicable disease, including persons in contact and carrier.

The National Communicable Diseases Committee will have the authority to assign provincial communicable disease committees or Bangkok’s communicable diseases committee tasks to be undertaken in their areas of responsibility, while provincial governors will be able to issue a prohibition order against activities and events deemed at risk of spreading disease, with penalties for violations.

After being approved by the Cabinet, the draft amendment will now be fast-tracked to the Council of State for consideration, after which it will be voted on by the House of Representatives./.