As the weather turns cooler in December and January, the incidence of respiratory disorders and seasonal flu increases. This year, the traditional warnings were accompanied by call for vigilance of a possible resurgence of Covid-19.

In a December 19 press release on health measures the public should take during the cold weather, the Ministry of Health said Covid-19 case numbers were once again growing internationally, along with the number of cases the Kingdom was experiencing.

“This illustrates that the pandemic is far from over. The Omicron variant has continued to mutate into various forms, increasing the likelihood of transmission. We must all take care to prevent a large-scale recurrence of community transmissions,” it said.

Minister of Health Mam Bun Heng reminded the public to take care of their family members during the cold period.

He said common seasonal illnesses during this period included respiratory disorders or allergies, and flus, which often caused sore throats and runny noses.

In order to protect their health during the cold weather, people should wear thick clothes. Scarves, gloves and hats should be worn for additional protection against the cold.

“You should seek medical treatment if your symptoms include breathing difficulties, a fever, a sore throat or aching muscles. Please be careful not to expose anyone else to any illnesses you may have,” he said.

The ministry encouraged anyone who suspected they may have been exposed to Covid-19 to immediately isolate themselves and take a rapid antigen test.

“If your test is positive, you must remain isolated from your family members. If your symptoms are mild, you can remain at home and treat yourself. Should your condition worsen, you must seek treatment at a state-run hospital,” it said.

Prime Minister Hun Sen appealed to all Cambodians to take care of their health during the cold weather.

The Ministry of Water Resources and Meteorology issued weather warnings and urged caution during the cold weather.

In the coming weeks, Cambodia will be affected by moderate to strong pressure fronts from China and the northeast monsoon, the ministry said.

The ministry said the central lowlands, including Banteay Meanchey, Pailin, Siem Reap and Battambang, are forecast to drop to 16-19 degrees Celsius overnight. Some upland provinces, such as Mondulkiri, Ratanakkiri, Preah Vihear and Oddar Meanchey, will experience similar conditions.

The ministry called on the public, especially the residents of the Dangrek Mountains or the northeast plateau, as well as fishermen, to be sure to dress warmly enough for the weather.