Many online forums over the past week have been inundated by concerned expat parents who fear that should a child test positive they may be forced to quarantine separately from their parents.
Misinformation and fear has spread as many parents have been misinformed that they may be separated from their children.
CityNews reached out to Health Care Medical Clinic (HCMC), a popular clinic amongst expatriates, for some clarity. This information has also been independently confirmed by a doctor at Bangkok Hospital.
“When someone tests positive, whether it is at our clinic or at any other clinic or hospital, the lab which tests the result will immediately inform the public health office,” said a nurse practitioner at HCMC. “At this point it is up to the patient to choose where to then go to do a full checkup. This checkup is mandatory, but the location of the checkup, whether at the International Convention Centre, at Lanna Hospital or at any city or rural hospital, is up to the patient. At the checkup, a patient will be given an identity number and will be classed as ‘green’ (asymptomatic and able to stay at determined hotel), ‘yellow’ (mild symptoms and quarantined at field hospitals) or ‘red’ (severe and hospitalised).”
The next step is to choose where to quarantine. Anyone who tests positive and is labelled ‘green’ will have the choice to go into state quarantine, private hotel quarantine or a private hospital. What is important to note is that for some places, the location of quarantine is tied to the location of the checkup. So, should you get tested at the Convention Centre, the state quarantine is at the Convention Centre itself, the private hotel quarantine is at Rattanakosin Hotel and a private hospital can be requested depending on availability. Hotel and private hospital quarantines will be paid for in full by the patient. Whereas state quarantine has no expenses involved. State quarantine, however, separates people by gender, though young children below the age of 8 (this number was given by Bangkok Hospital doctors but hasn’t been independently confirmed) may remain with parents of the opposite gender in quarantine, though in most cases young children will be put in a hospital, not a field hospital. ‘Yellow’ and ‘red’ patients, however, will have a medical doctor determine what path and location of treatment is best for them – again, with private and public options, and with similar rules regarding gender. Not all quarantine options are of the same standard, due to location or availability, so if a patient wishes to stay at a nicer hotel, they need to make sure they do their checkup at a hospital which is attached to one. Unfortunately there is no published list at this point showing which hotel is tied to which checkup location. It is best patients call and ask beforehand to ensure they get to quarantine somewhere suitable to them, according to HCMD.