Thailand is to reopen to more than 50 countries to vaccinated travelers starting July 1, 2019. The move, led by the World Health Organization (WHO), aims to help prevent a newly-introduced cholera outbreak.
A nationwide biweekly call last week by the health agency for H5N1 vaccine production and recent contract modifications should result in the resumption of regular DZ vaccines in eight months.
“This decision follows an investigation report submitted to the Director General on the bacteria, linked to imported norovirus in hospitals in the country. Until December, four state-run hospitals in Bangkok and one in Hat Yai will collect vaccine from private units,” a health agency spokesperson told Reuters on Thursday.
In early July, Thailand’s health agency reported 23 deaths and 144 confirmed cases of viral gastroenteritis. The cholera outbreak was initially traced to seven countries: Cambodia, China, Hong Kong, Japan, Macau, and South Korea.
“In the past few weeks, cholera cases have increased rapidly as hundreds of people visiting Thailand get exposed to infected people. The whole country should take action to prevent another Cholera outbreak,” Dr. Sansern Prommangkarn, Thailand’s Permanent Secretary for Public Health, told Reuters.
According to Reuters, many of the confirmed cases have been in children under the age of five.
“For parents of young children, the proposed measure will give them a chance to keep their children home from school,” the health agency spokesperson said.