Probe into ‘virus death’

Monks from various temples on Sunday gather in the ubosot at Wat Maha That Yuwarat Rangsarit of Bangkok's Phra Nakhon district for evening prayer seeking blessings for the victims of the Covid-19 outbreak and an end to the rapid spread of the virus in all parts of the world. Arnun Chonmahatrakool

First Thai fatality linked to Covid-19

Doubts have been raised over the cause of death of a Thai man who was initially diagnosed with Covid-19.

The man, 35, is the subject of a Public Health Ministry probe as information on his symptoms contradicts evidence revealed by a specialist in new emerging diseases.

The man died of multi-organ failure on Saturday night although doctors had detected no coronavirus in his body since Feb 16, Disease Control Department chief Suwannachai Wattanayingcharoenchai said on Sunday.

He was among 42 people who were found to have contracted coronavirus following the viral outbreak in the central Chinese city of Wuhan in December.

The man had been first treated for dengue fever at a private hospital in late January before being transferred to the Bamrasnaradura Infectious Diseases Institute in Nonthaburi province because he had also contracted the Covid-19 virus, Dr. Suwannachai said.

Until Feb 29, 2,953 people were kept under surveillance. Most of them had contracted influenza, Dr Suwannachai said, adding 1,748 have been discharged from hospital.

Officials also reported 30 of the 42 Covid-19-infected patients have recovered.

Sunday was the first day that new state measures against Covid-19 disease, now listed as a dangerous communicable disease, took effect.

This caused the Administrative Court to order its officials not to travel to 11 severely affected countries and territories.

However, despite the stronger efforts to curb the viral epidemic, Dr. Thiravat said authorities have to do more by intensifying their screening of people suspected to catch the virus.

“Eighty per cent of Thai people who contracted the virus showed little or no symptoms but they can spread the disease,” he wrote on his Facebook page.

The virus lodges deeply in the lower part of windpipe and lungs, so patients will not cough or have a sore throat when they first develop the disease.

This explains why tests on fluids taken from noses and throats often turn out negative, Dr. Thiravat said.

Writer: Post Reporters
Source: Bangkok Post