Tourists pay, expats continue to receive free shots
The Public Health Ministry plans for at least one Covid-19 vaccination centre per province for foreign tourists paying for shots, while foreign residents will continue to get free jabs.
Dr Opas Karnkawinpong, permanent secretary for health, said on Tuesday there should be vaccination centres in all provinces because foreign tourists did not limit their visits to only major provinces.
The vaccination service would be provided on a voluntary basis and the government would use only the vaccines that it procured, he said.
Foreigners staying long-term in the country would continue to receive free Covid-19 vaccines, in line with government policy to vaccinate everyone living here against the disease, Dr Opas said. This included businesspeople, workers and diplomats and their family members.
Dr Tares Krassanairawiwong, director-general of disease control, said his department provided a vaccination service at Bang Rak Medical Centre in Bangrak district and the Institute for Urban Disease Control and Prevention in Bang Khen district.
The department provided the same service at its travel medicine clinics in Chiang Mai, Chon Buri and Songkhla provinces, and also in Phuket province.
Foreign tourists must pay 800 baht for a shot of AstraZeneca vaccine or 1,000 baht per Pfizer vaccine dose, plus a 380 baht medical service fee, Dr Tares said.
The department had not so far given approval for private organisations to provide the service. It was still in the planning stage, he said.
Dr Thongchai Keeratihuttayakorn, director-general of medical services, said his department provided a vaccination service at its Institute of Dermatology, Lerdsin Hospital, Rajavithi Hospital and Nopparat Rajathanee Hospital and at Chiangmai Neurological Hospital.
The Institute of Dermatology and Rajavithi Hospital were main vaccination centres because they were near areas where foreign tourists stay and transport networks, and staff were long familiarised with providing services for foreigners, he said.