Health system in crisis, critics tell government


Health system in crisis, critics tell government

Ambulance service overwhelmed, bodies left lying in the streets

A dead man lies in the middle of the road, covered with a sheet, hours after his death, on Soi Ban Phanthom, near Phra Sumeru Road, in the Phra Nakhon district of Bangkok on Tuesday evening. (Photo from Phuri Phatara’s Facebook account)

Critics accused the government of allowing public health services to collapse after two people died on the streets of Bangkok and one was left lying in the middle of the road for hours before finally an ambulance arrives.

Former Human Rights Commission member Angkhana Neelapaijit on Wednesday called the government a “cold heart” on her Facebook page.

She said people have been left on the streets with no chance of getting health care.

Move Forward spokesperson and Bangkok MP Nattacha Boonchaiinsawat said Prime Minister Prayut Cha-o-cha had no plan to deal with the health crisis that had led to the deaths of people on the streets.

Their criticism came after two people were found dead on the streets of Bangkok on Tuesday. A third was found dead at Wat Suthas Thepwararam. All of them were in the Phra Nakhon district.

The most mentioned case on social media is that of a man who collapsed and later died in the middle of Soi Ban Phan Thom, near Phra Sumeru Road.

Chana Songkhram police chief Pol Col Sanong Sanemanee told the traffic police radio station that the man died around 5 p.m. despite efforts by rescuers to keep him alive. An ambulance did not arrive until 10:30 p.m. and took the body away.

A Facebook account named Phuri Phatara said the patient had been lying in the middle of the street since 10 a.m. Rescue workers arrived about four hours later. (continued below)

A body rests on the sidewalk along Ratchadamneon Avenue near the Democracy Monument on Tuesday evening. (Photo from Kanit Chumchuay’s Facebook account)

Another body was found on the sidewalk of Ratchadamneon Avenue, near the iconic monument to democracy.

The cause of death in each case was not known. However, ambulances adapted to treat coronavirus patients were used in each case to retrieve the body and ensure the safety of rescuers and medics.

Wednesday morning, shortly after midnight, Kanit Chumchuay, the the kit district chief, defended the long delay in the arrival of ambulances. He said this was due to the ever increasing demand for ambulances. The service was overwhelmed.

The Poh Tech Tung Foundation was on duty Tuesday evening, but only had an ambulance equipped with Covid protection kits and had to recover eight more bodies before taking the three unclaimed bodies to hospital.

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