Thailand Strives to Take the Lead in Recovering from COVID-19

Thailand Strives to Take the Lead in Recovering from COVID-19

According to the Global COVID-19 Index (GCI), Thailand currently ranks 2nd out of 184 countries for COVID-19 recovery. Launched by the PEMANDU Associates in collaboration with Malaysia’s Ministry of Science, Technology and Innovation (MOSTI) and the Sunway Group, the GCI was established as a way of measuring the COVID-19 recovery performance of countries around the world. Under the GCI ranking system, changes to the number of infected and recovery cases reported daily are monitored and assessed in terms of Severity and Recovery aspects of COVID-19 in order to determine the dynamic situation of each country.

Thailand’s Severity

Designed to measure infection patterns and rates, the GCI Severity Index assesses the infection data of countries with similar size populations and economic competencies in comparison with their ability to recover. The Severity index weights 70% of the scoring from confirmed cases within the population and the proportion of the country’s death rate that is attributed to COVID-19 in order to ensure accurate representation of infected cases and mortality rates relative to each country’s population size. The remaining 30% of the scoring is weighted from the Global Health Security (GHS) Index produced by Johns Hopkins University as a measure of the country’s ability to prevent an epidemic and the robustness of its public health system.

In this sub-category, Thailand’s Severity rate score of 10.90 out of 100 is second only to Taiwan’s score of 10.83. While the difference in the severity rating scores of the two countries is minimal, the index indicates that Thailand has stricter measures in place as shown in the country’s Stringency rating of 56.52 compared to Taiwan’s Stringency rating of 17.39. Indeed, Thailand has reported zero new cases of domestic COVID-19 infection for 30 consecutive days dating back to 26 May 2020. As a result, the country has been gradually relaxing the control measures it previously imposed, including lifting the curfew and allowing group activities to take place starting from 15 June 2020, while schools, pubs, and bars will be allowed to commence operating again starting from 1 July 2020.

Speedy Recovery

For the Recovery Index, four major indicators, namely active cases per population, recoveries per confirmed case, tests conducted per confirmed case, and test conducted per population, account for 70% of the evaluation, while the remaining 30% is derived from GHS Index categories of early detection, rapid response, and health infrastructure. Key health data such as beds per population, doctors per population, and access to basic healthcare are taken into account in this sub-category index. For Thailand, the country was ranked the 2nd in terms of its COVID-19 recovery performance with an index score of 83.34 points, while Australia came out on top with a score of 85.85. It is also notable that Thailand performed relatively well in comparison with other countries of a similar population size and level of economic development, such as Iran, South Africa, and Turkey, which registered Recovery Index scores of 50.07, 40.92, and 59.26 points, respectively. As of 24 June 2020, Thailand reported that 95.85% of its COVID-19 infected cases, both domestic and imported, had been successfully cured with 73 patients still receiving treatment in state facilities. The total number of COVID-19 fatalities in Thailand stands at 58 cases, representing just 1.84% of the total number of patients infected in the country since the outbreak of the pandemic.

Note: Information updated as of 24 June 2020