The Public Health Ministry said that the new variant of COVID-19 known as C.36.3 that was detected in Britain was not a Thai variant of the virus.
Dr Opas Karnkawinpong, director-general of the ministry’s Department of Disease Control, quoted the Division of Epidemiology of his department as reporting that infection with the variant was confirmed with a male Egyptian co-pilot who lived in Egypt.
The Egyptian departed from Egypt on Jan 25 and arrived in Bangkok on Jan 26 on an Egyptian Airlines plane. He stayed at an alternative state quarantine facility. His first COVID-19 test there confirmed that he was infected with the C.36.3 variant.
A subsequent test showed he was free of the disease. He was discharged from his hospital on Feb 16 and returned to Egypt right away. No other patients were diagnosed as having the variant in Thailand.
In principle, Britain should not have listed the C.36.3 variant as the Thai variant because the infected person had arrived from another country, Dr Opas said. (TNA)