Public Health Ministry s campaign to reduce deaths during Songkran

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BANGKOK, 9 April 2012 -Public Health Minister Mr. Wittaya Buranasiri said over 10,000 public health services and related agencies will collaborate with the Ministry of Public Health in efforts to reduce road tolls, providing around-the-clock medical treatments, and controlling the sale of alcohol during the long holiday period.

Volunteers and staff will be deployed countrywide to encourage people to drive sensibly on the road. Under this year’s safety campaign, the Office of Disease Prevention Control in 12 districts across Thailand and the ‘Don’t Drive Drunk Foundation’ will visit liquor stores to make sure they comply with the Sale of Alcohol Act 2008, which bans the sales of alcoholic beverages before and during Songkran Festival.

Sales of alcohol will be permitted only from 11.00 hrs – 14.00 hrs and 17.00 hrs – 24.00 hrs on April 11th and 13th, 2012. As for medical services, the Medical Institute of Thailand has organized more than 11,000 emergency units which have access to small communities with 122,945 medical staff. It also has on hand 14,189 ambulances, 1,128 boats, 101 helicopters and 7 airplanes; all ready for emergency operations.

People are encouraged to call a 24-hours 1669 hotline and expect an emergency unit to arrive within 10 minutes 80% of the times, in line with the Public Health Ministry policy, which states that people should receive medical attention as quickly as they can to prevent the loss of live or becoming a handicapped person.