Thailand Announced its First Case of Omicron Variant

Thailand has detected its first case of Omicron variant in a Thai but U.S. citizen who travelled from Spain late last month, according to a health official.

“This first confirmed case of Omicron variant is a 35-year-old man who is a U.S. citizen who lived in Spain for a year,” according to Opas Karnkawinpong, Director-General of the Department of Disease Control.

The man entered Thailand on November 29 through Suvarnabhumi Airport and was detected for omicron variant through the Test & Go program using RT-PCR test.

The patient said that he was travelling alone and did not sit near any passenger while on the plane. He was also wearing mask all the time while staying in the hotel.

The Department of Disease Control stated that all 19 people, consisting of 17 hotel staff and 2 airport staff are in a low-risk category and the department will keep track of all 19 people during this time.

Although previously it was noted RT-PCR might not be able to detect existence of omicron variant, however this marks the test is able to detect omicron variant. This also implies minimal effect on the country’s reopening plan given existing testing procedures in place are able to screen out potential omicron cases.