Government ensures face mask availability


BANGKOK — Governmental organizations have urged mask producers to make their products available for people amid threats from the novel coronavirus and thick smog.

Maj Gen Thanathip Sawangsaeng, spokesman of the Internal Security Operations Command (ISOC), said Prime Minister and Defense Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha, in his capacity as the ISOC director, ordered ISOC together with the Commerce Ministry and the Public Health Ministry to convince 26 mask producers in the Central Plains and another producer in the North to supply face masks to their distributors so that the products would be available for general people.

The prime minister was concerned about public health and made the order because the novel coronavirus outbreak and the high levels of smog were harming people, Maj Gen Thanathip said.

“The prime minister, as the ISOC director, has ordered relevant organizations to campaign for the proper use of face masks so that people will be safe from PM2.5 and the novel coronavirus,” he said.

The spokesman encouraged the mass media to update people on useful information about the virus outbreak and particulate matter 2.5 micrometers and less in diameter (PM2.5).