Pattaya rescue units refusing ill patients due to Covid-19 fears

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The foundation will regularly clean and disinfect vehicles and equipment to ensure both are as safe as possible.
The foundation will regularly clean and disinfect vehicles and equipment to ensure both are as safe as possible.

The Sawang Boriboon Thammasathan Foundation will stop taking sick people to the hospital and only respond to road accidents for fear of paramedics catching Covid-19.



Rescue Unit chief Prasit Thongtidcharoen said March 20 that while the foundation is regularly disinfecting its ambulances, rescue vehicles and equipment, it cannot guarantee the safety of its volunteers and employees nor be confident that everyone transported in those vans won’t be exposed to the deadly virus.

Ironically, 20 Sawang Boriboon paramedics just two days earlier went through training from the National Institute of Emergency Medicine on how to protect themselves from the virus as the NIEM works to form 100 coronavirus-response teams across the country with at least one from each of Thailand’s 77 provinces.

That now apparently now won’t be Sawang Boriboon.

Paramedics will continue to respond to road accidents and take those with physical injuries to hospitals, but ill people calling for transport will be passed on to the hospitals to arrange transport.

Prasit asked understanding from the public and Sawang Boriboon and other rescue foundations stop caring for coronavirus stricken people.

Despite the policy change, the foundation will regularly clean and disinfect vehicles and equipment to ensure both are as safe as possible, he said.

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Ambulances and emergency rescue units on standby at the Sawang Boriboon Thammasathan Foundation premises.
Ambulances and emergency rescue units on standby at the Sawang Boriboon Thammasathan Foundation premises.
A man in full protective gear disinfects the interior of an ambulance.
A man in full protective gear disinfects the interior of an ambulance.
The staff ensure that all medical equipment and accessories are in good condition.
The staff ensure that all medical equipment and accessories are in good condition.