Indonesia’s central administration has provided 125,000 rapid test kits to 34 provinces for screening those coming in close contact with coronavirus patients and medical workers, said government spokesperson for COVID-19 handling, Achmad Yurianto.

"We have distributed 125,000 rapid test kits to 34 provinces," he said in Jakarta, Tuesday.

The provinces will use the rapid tests for two groups — those who have been in close contact with COVID-19 positive patients, and medical workers involved in coronavirus countermeasures, he said.

More kits will be distributed in the next phase, based on the areas where cases have emerged and areas with potential for infection.

"In the context of rapid tests, we have established a policy where the test will be carried out against those who have had contact with confirmed positive cases being treated in the hospital, or positive cases who are self-isolating at home," he added.

Yurianto further said contact tracing would involve testing family members living in the same house as a patient. If patients have a history of working in a certain place, with possibility of close contact, tests will also be carried out at their workplace, he added.

"Our second priority is medical workers involved in COVID-19 treatment, including hospital front-office workers. They are the group vulnerable to infection," he continued.

Tests will be carried out against the two prioritized groups in the first phase.

He further said that if there are more rapid test kits coming in, there will be region-based inspections, similar to the ones carried out in South Jakarta.

"The execution of the rapid test will be decentralized to health facilities in the region, such as health centers, regional laboratories, as well as government and regional hospitals," he said. (ANTARA) 


Jakarta - The Indonesian rupiah strengthened against the US dollar in the Jakarta interbank market on Tuesday morning on the back of positive sentiment toward risk assets.

The rupiah increased 85 points, or 0.51 percent, to Rp16,490 per US dollar at 9:10 a.m. local time on Tuesday, from Rp16,575 per US dollar earlier.

"The US Central Bank's sudden announcement yesterday night to release a credit program to US businesspersons through the banking system has lent a positive sentiment to some of the risk assets," Monex Investindo Futures chief researcher Ariston stated.

On Tuesday morning, Asian share indexes, including Nikkei and Kospi strengthened, and so did the Australian share index and the Futures SAP 500 share index.

In the meantime, the currencies of emerging markets also strengthened against the US dollar.  

"This will also lend a positive sentiment to the rupiah today. The rupiah may strengthen to the level of Rp16,000," he remarked.

Moreover, the market awaits the US Senate's approval of a US$2-trillion stimulus on Tuesday. If the stimulus is approved, it will further strengthen the rupiah, he noted.

He has forecast the rupiah to trade at between Rp16,000 and Rp16,575 per US dollar on Tuesday. (ANTARA) 


Indonesian Air Force plane carries 9 tons of medical aid from China

A truck carrying medical device assistance from Tsingshan Charity Foundation to contain COVID-19 outbreak in Indonesia arrives at Pudong Airport in Shanghai, China, Saturday (March 21)

An Indonesian Air Force Hercules C-130 plane left Pudong International Airport in Shanghai early Sunday, carrying 9 tons of medical assistance from different sides in China to contain the COVID-19 outbreak in Indonesia.

The military cargo plane arrived at Pudong Airport at 10.20 p.m. on Saturday and left the airport at 00.40 a,m on Sunday. The plane made a transit stop at Sanya Airport in Hainan Province before continuing its flight to Indonesia..

"The plane was sent to transport the assistance at the initiative of the Indonesian Defense Ministry," Indonesian Ambassador to China Djauhari Oratmangun told ANTARA.

All sorts of Chinese assistance for Indonesia will be transported from Shanghai and Guangzhou, Guangdong Province.

"Beijing currently comes under attention. All sorts of assistance will be flown from Shanghai and Guangzhou," he said.

In line with the rising number of COIVD-19 cases outside China through Beijing, the Chinese authorities have decided to allow planes carrying foreign nationals and international cargo planes to land at airports in the cities of Tianjin, Hohhot and Taiyua.

Vice Chief of the Indonesian Mission in Beijing Dino Kusnadi said the medical assistance in the form of masks, goggles, protective clothing and COVID-19 test kits come from different sides including .Inacham and Tsingshan Charity Foundation

The medical assistance is the first phase of aid. China is expected to extend another 20 tons of medical aid for Indonesia


Some top officials inspect emergency hospital for COVID-19 patients

Kemayoran Athlete Village changes into an emergency hopsital to treat COVID-19 patients (ANTARA)

Several top officials inspected on Sunday an emergency hospital at the Kemayoran Athlete Village in Central Jakarta to treat patients with coronavirus infection.

The top state officials included Public Works and Housing Minister Basuki Hadimuljono, Health Minister Terawan Agus Putranto, Chief of the National Defense Forces (TNI) Marshal Hadi Tjahjanto, and Chief of the COVID-19 Task Force Doni Monardo.

"We have checked the Kemayoran Athlete Village buildings that have been upgraded into an emergency hospital to treat COVID-19 patients," TNI Chief Marshal Hadi Tjahjanto said in a press conference at the Kemayoran Athlete Village in Central Jakarta on Sunday.

He said several buildings including Towers 6 and 7 will be used as ICU and non-ICU rooms equipped with standard air conditioners. Tower 3 will be used for supporting medical workers including those from Indonesian military/police hospitals, state-owned companies' hospitals and private hospitals.

"One tower will be used for personnel of the Military/police/BNPB (National Disaster Mitigation Agency) task forces," he said.

Based on the results of check, a rehearsal for the operation of the emergency hospital will be conducted on Sunday night (March 22), he said.

Hopefully, the hospital will start operating on Monday (March 23) as scheduled, he said.

According to the Housing Directorate General's plan, four towers will be used as an emergency hospital. They are towers 1, 3, 6 and 7 in Block D10 next to Mitra Kemayoran Hospital.

The first to 24th floors of Tower 1 will be used for doctors and medical workers. Tower 1 consists of 650 rooms capable of accommodating 1,750 people, he said.

The first to 24th floors of Tower 3 will function as COVID-19 Task Force Command Post. The tower also comprises 650 rooms that can accommodate some 1,750 people.

The first to 24th floors of Tower 6 will be used for an emergency hospital and inpatient treatment . Like Towers 1 and 3, Tower 6 also comprises 650 rooms that can accommodate 1,750 patients. (ANTARA)

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