As Cambodia moves on with ‘reopening’ – despite the looming Omicron mutation that is spreading rapidly around the world – The Kingdom once again recorded low daily new COVID case figures (diagnosed by PCR test) in an incredible run of 63 days of ‘new normal’ low case numbers.
Today’s official daily new COVID case total (diagnosed by PCR test) was 23, bringing the COVID case total to 120,183 cases.
Major fears have been raised over this new variant of COVID-19, which is reported to be highly transmissible, has a higher reinfection rate and has spread to America, Asia, Europe and Australia and many other countries.
It remains to be seen if Cambodia will implement an additional ban on passengers from Omicron hit countries entering Cambodia – which would include the USA, the UK, Australia and many European countries.
The Health Ministry is looking into the possibility of replacing rapid testing for inbound travellers with PCR tests which are more effective in detecting Omicron.
Despite the threat of Omicron, Cambodia is pressing on with reopening with several moves reported today – including the news that no quarantine is needed for unvaccinated children of fully-vaccinated adults, and the reopening of public and private kindergartens and childcare services for children aged 5 and over,
The emphasis of the Royal Government is now on shifting to the ‘new normalcy’ and making Cambodia open for tourism and business by managing milder cases of COVID with home treatment.
In welcome news, Bangkok Airways has announced that it has resumed flights to Phnom Penh, with Cambodia Airports spokesman Norinda Khek stating that he also hoped flights between Siem Reap and Bangkok will resume very soon.
“Cambodia and Thailand have confirmed their plans to ease border controls and quarantine measures for vaccinated visitors, a positive path forward for the resumption of air travel,” he said.
As previously explained, the recent spectacular downwards trend in reported cases is a result of a policy instituted in October of not counting ‘rapid’ testing and ‘mild’ cases of COVID-19 in the official daily case figures.
Certainly, there was a general upwards trend in The Kingdom under the old reporting regime, however, the last 63 day’s results have completely reversed this trend- as illustrated in the graph below (please note results may be up to 2 days behind) below:
Looking at other figures, the total number of Community Cases is now 100,353 with 19,830 cases being imported.
The contrast between Cambodia’s COVID situation and that of its neighbours of Thailand and Vietnam is certainly startling.
The figures (see graph below) are testament to The Kingdom’s widespread vaccination campaign – the ‘Cambodian vaccination miracle’ .
3 imported cases were announced today, continuing the trend of minimal imported cases.
Cambodia also announced 5 new deaths, bringing the total to 2949 direct deaths from COVID-19 in Cambodia.
19 recoveries were announced as active cases continued to drop – there are now just 679 active COVID cases diagnosed by PCR test in Cambodia.
Cambodia now not only has a much higher vaccination rate than it’s immediate neighbours of Thailand, Laos and Vietnam (see below) – but it has now overtaken almost every major country in the world – including France, the UK, the USA, and Germany.
However, low uptake of the 3rd booster dose in Phnom Penh has led Phnom Penh authorities to extend the 3rd ‘booster’ shot campaign indefinitely.