Thailand warns of COVID-19 spread on Lunar New Year hinh anh 1People shop for the Lunar New Year festival in Thailand (Photo: Xinhua/VNA)
Bangkok (VNA)Thailand’s Public Health Ministry is concerned about possible COVID-19 transmission risks when families reunite to celebrate the upcoming Lunar New Year this week.

Chawetsan Namwat, director of the country’s emergency disease and health hazards control division under the Department of Disease Control, stressed the importance of strict social distancing during family gatherings.

The public would still have to comply with disease control measures until herd immunity is acquired, he said, adding that active case-finding would continue even though the number of COVID-19 cases has begun to drop.

Thailand’s Centre for COVID-19 Situation Administration (CCSA) on February 7 reported a total of 237 new cases, bringing the national tally up to 23,371. Of the infections, 112 were detected from active case-finding in communities, 113 others were confirmed by hospitals, and 12 imported.

Meanwhile, in Malaysia, family reunion dinners for Lunar New Year eve (February 11) are now permitted, as a result of a National Security Council technical meeting chaired by Defence Minister Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob on February 7.

In a statement on the same day, the country’s National Unity Ministry said the gatherings ought to be limited to 15 family members living within a 10km radius and must not involve interstate or inter-district travel.

Also on February 7, Malaysia posted 3,731 new COVID-19 cases and 15 deaths from the disease. The number of positive cases nationwide stood at 51,241, creating a high pressure on the local medical system./.