BANGKOK (Reuters) – Thailand’s health ministry on Sunday reported 1,940 new cases of coronavirus, while deaths reached 21 in the second day, the highest number of deaths since the pandemic began.
Thailand largely controlled the virus at the start of the pandemic by stopping and tight border controls. But a deadly third wave, which begins in early April, includes the highly transmissible variant B.1
Sunday’s numbers have led to a total of 68,984 confirmed infections in the country since the pandemic began last year. The total number of deaths is now 245.
So far, Thailand has vaccinated nearly 1.5 million people, mostly medical workers and vulnerable people, using imported doses of Chinese vaccines Sinovac and AstraZeneca.
The mass vaccination program will begin in June with locally produced doses of AstraZeneca. Vaccine registration was open to the public this weekend in order to inoculate 70 percent of the country’s adults with more than 66 million people.
Report by Panarat Teggumpanat; Edited by Christian Schmolinger and Tom Hogg