COVID-19 Situation Update 4
Date: August 21st 2021
The current wave of the epidemic in Tak Province, bordering Burma, began in late June with large outbreaks detected in factories in the area. New cases have been continuously reported, over 5,534 patients (+1,374 compared to the last weekly situation update) currently in treatment for the disease that continues to severely strain the medical system. On Friday, August 20th, there were 261 new cases diagnosed in Tak, with 243 of those in Mae Sot, home to the clinic, and the nearby districts of Phop Phra, Mae Ramat, and Tha Song Yang. Since April 1st, 2021, a total of 8,382 cases (+1,634 from the last weekly update) have been reported in the province (Tak Provincial Public Relations Office Page).
Since June 28th, the Mae Tao Clinic has been an official field hospital for the Mae Sot public health system, providing care for infected individuals deemed low risk for developing complications or severe disease. While MTC staff members are responsible for providing daily care, they work in partnership with medical staff of the Mae Sot Hospital and other Thai public health entities, closely monitoring patients for evidence of clinical deterioration and facilitating timely referrals if necessary. To date, 118 people infected with COVID-19 are under MTC’s supervision. MTC has served over 495 COVID-19 patients who have been referred from the Thai health system, are staff from MTC and partner organizations or are residents of the surrounding communities.
On July 10th, our first staff member was found to be infected with COVID-19. This prompted the clinic, working in conjunction with local health partners, to pursue aggressive contact tracing and screen all members of the staff, along with household contacts, nearby community members, and others with possible exposure.
As a precaution, starting on July 15th, most clinical services at the clinic were suspended indefinitely in order to protect the health and safety of our staff members, their families, and all the communities we serve. This pause was also to allow us to efficiently focus our efforts on identifying and taking care of infected members of the extended MTC family and the community.
As the number of infected persons in the Mae Sot area continued to increase, the local health system progressively came under increased strain. Thus, in order to help alleviate the pressure on the Mae Sot public health system, the MTC partnered with the Mae Sot Hospital to form a local COVID-19 control committee starting in early August. The committee worked to establish alternate isolation systems for mildly ill patients or those without symptoms, thereby freeing up health facilities to care for those more severely ill and also to control community spread, while closely monitoring patients and facilitating timely referrals, if needed. Home isolation guidelines were also developed and disseminated to those being isolated and treated at home, in factories and in the community. In addition, the MTC, working closely with other members of the committee, provides services for patients in isolation in the Tha Sai Luat District just west of Mae Sot city, bordering Burma. These include not only providing monitoring and assessments, along with referrals, for patients, many of whom live in remote areas, but also testing services for COVID-19, medical waste management, and food support.
In addition to the direct strains on the local public health system, the epidemic has also added other, severe, indirect strains on the health system. With health facilities forced to close or curtail their services to address the epidemic, those still operational have faced additional demands for non-COVID-19-related services, particularly for reproductive health services. Thus, MTC made the decision to resume care for expectant migrant women, many of whom would otherwise face multiple challenges in accessing essential maternal and child healthcare, and has been working to put in place strict COVID-19 guidelines and protocols in place to ensure this can be done safely. Services were finally resumed on the 17th of August and fifteen pregnant women have been making the use of the service as of August 20th.
|Category||Total case||New case||Referred to MSH||Currently under supervision||Recovered/
|Non clinical staff||86||6||11||19||70|
|Surrounding community contact||59||13||2||32||25|
|RH delivery patients and their family||1||1||0||1||0|
* Last updated on August 18th 2021
As of August 18th, there are 118 people infected with COVID-19 (97 staff members, household contacts, surrounding community members, patient and RH delivery patients and their family along with 21 patients referred for management from Mae Sot public health system) are in isolation in the clinic compound. Those who have had close contact with patients with confirmed COVID-19 infection are also quarantined. A total of 374 people infected with COVID-19 have recovered and have been discharged after at least 14 days isolation and monitoring. The clinic is currently in the process of screening staff members who have recovered from COVID-19 to assess for potential longer-term impairments which may impact their ability to work prior to their return.
To prevent and control further transmission clinical services, except the reproductive health care service, remain closed. Please refer to the Facebook pages of the Mae Tao Clinic (in English and Burmese), which will frequently be updated to incorporate the most up-to-date information as it becomes available, particularly during this current unpredictable situation.
There have been many inquiries about testing and vaccinations for COVID-19. Unfortunately, the clinic is unable to provide these services at the present time as they are all currently handled through the Thai health system. If you think you have been exposed and would like testing, please contact the Mae Sot Hospital call center Tel. 065-461-1120 or the COVID-19 call center Tel. 1330. To access COVID-19 treatment, you can register in the Thai health system through the call center Tel. 1130, extension number 14, or add the Line account @sabaideebot and follow further instructions. If you have tested positive using a rapid test (antigen test kit), please call migrant home isolation center at Tel. 065-476-9295 or 065-476-6560. Services are available in Burmese and the center will help provide services including monitoring and health assessments, food and medicine support, and transportation support, if necessary.
For the latest vaccine information, please visit the Thai Government Public Relations Department’s official Facebook page. In case you need assistance for maternal health care services (ANC, delivery care and PNC), please visit Mae Sot Hospital or nearest health posts. For those who are in need of assistance in management of non-communicable (chronic) diseases or HIV/AIDS, please contact Ms Sophia Hla (English, Burmese and Karen language), Tel. 081-037-5800 or Ms Sable Moe (Burmese and Karen language), Tel. 06-2945-6208.
Starting on August 2nd, 410 students are enrolled at CDC and the school began online learning sessions. Despite the preparation for teaching online, this transition to remote learning at home has been challenging for some teachers due to limited internet access but MTC and CDC are looking for a way to support teachers.
We are deeply thankful for all those that have and continue to support our work and the communities we work with. For those interested in doing so, please understand that as a COVID-19 field hospital in the midst of a serious epidemic, to ensure safety for everyone, we are very limited in what we are able to accept. We are currently not able to accept cooked food or individually purchased medicines. If you would like to donate clothes or bedding, we respectfully request that these are new and in their original packaging. The supplies that we are currently most in need of are listed below.
|General Social Support|
|Dry food (rice; tinned fish; cooking oil; salt; yellow beans; chili powder; seasoning etc.)|
|Nutritional supplements (milk; milo)|
|New bedding (mat; pillow; blanket; mosquito net)|
|PPEs (surgical mask for medical use; face shields; medical/ hospital grade gloves; medical coveralls)|
|N95 face mask|
|Alcohol 70% + Glycerin 1% or Alcohol Gel|
|COVID-19 Rapid Antigen Testing Kits (approved by Thai FDA)*|
|Glucose test (50/box)|
|Personal Hygiene Kit (soap; shampoo; tooth paste & tooth brush; sanitation pad; toilet paper)|
*The list of approved kits can be found on the Thai FDA website, here: https://www.fda.moph.go.th/sites/Medical/SitePages/test_kit_covid19.aspx
Please note that this list is dynamic and, given the rapidly evolving circumstances, will be frequently updated to reflect our changing needs and priorities. For further questions regarding donations, please contact the designated persons listed below.
For general inquiries and donations, please contact the following:
- Ms Nwe Ni (English, Burmese and Thai language), Tel. 084-820-3743
- Ms Naw Annie (English, Burmese and Karen language), Tel. 089-916-5855
- Ms Pattinee Suanprasert (English and Thai language), Tel. 087-677-1415
For media inquiries:
- Communication team, firstname.lastname@example.org
- Ms Pattinee Suanprasert (Thai language), Tel. 087-677-1415
For clinical inquiries:
- Ms Sophia Hla (English, Burmese and Karen language), Tel. 081-037-5800
- Ms Wah Kuh Paw (Burmese and Karen language), Tel. 089-961-7316
For those interested in supporting our COVID-19 emergency response efforts directly: this can be done through deposits/wire transfer to the following account:
Account Name: Suwannimit Foundation for Mae Tao Clinic
Account Number: 016-8-83807-7
Bank and Branch: Kasikorn Bank, Mae Sot
SWIFT Code: KASITHBK
Bank Address: 84/9, Prasart Withi Rd., Mae Sot, Tak Province 63110, Thailand
 Isolation is used for people with COVID-19 symptoms or who have tested positive for the virus.