Thailand at risk of increasing COVID-19 infections after loosening lockdowns hinh anh 1A boy wears a protective face shield during his visit to Suan Rod Fai, Thailand (Photo:

Bangkok (VNA) - The Thai Government's COVID-19 pandemic advisory committee has warned that the country must be ready to cope with a possible resurgence in COVID-19 cases if lockdown measures are further eased, as slated for May 17.

Thailand began the first phase of the lockdown easing on May 3, although the ordinance on emergencies and the night curfew order are still valid until late May. The second phase of the four-phase process is expected to start on May 17 if the number of new COVID-19 cases does not increase.

Local media quoted Dr. Charas Suwanwela, chairman of the special committee, saying that the government, businesses and ordinary citizens must be prepared for an uptick in cases that might come after the relaxation of the lockdown, particularly the risk that it might overwhelm the health care system.

The doctor said Thailand has fared relatively well in dealing with the disease, with the death rate standing at 1.8 percent against much higher figures in Europe.

Despite this, he warned that the committee is concerned about reports of a second wave of infections in countries which have eased some of their restrictions.

The Southeast Asian nation has so far reported 3,004 COVID-19 cases, including 56 deaths. The number of cured patients totaled 2,787./.