Over the past two months of implementing Community Activity Restrictions (PPKM) in Java and Bali, Monday evening President Joko Widodo announced improvements in handling the Covid-19 pandemic. Although the PPKM remains in effect until September 6, there are some favours of various fields.
Positive data on the transmission of Covid-19 until Monday evening (30/8) showed a number that was far below the positive number in mid-July to mid-August. Yesterday, the number of confirmed positive reached 5,436 within a day. This figure is far below the confirmed figure that has reached more than 57,000 within a day.
President Joko Widodo also remarked that the national hospital bed occupancy rate was only 27 percent. This progress is certainly welcomed by the community. It can be imagined that people may return to their normal activities. They can go to earn a living without any more barriers on the road. School children can go back to school to share face-to-face learnings. In fact, the Banten provincial government has announced that it will implement face-to-face learnings starting from September 1 tomorrow for Senior High Schools or High Vocational Schools -SMA/SMK.
This improving pandemic situation shows that so far, the policies implemented by the Indonesian government have been viewed appropriately and have brought about good results. The health protocols were successfully enforced. About 96.5 million vaccines have been injected to Indonesian citizens. Vaccination continues to be accelerated and supportey a lot of related stakeholders. The health system is not collapsing. This is evidenced by the occupancy rate of hospital beds which continues to decline. The number of deaths due to Covid-19 continues to decline, along with the increase in the number of recoveries.
However, President Joko Widodo reminded the public not to be careless and keep being cautious in responding to this improving trend. He also affirmed that the Indonesian nation must take important lessons from the Covid-19 pandemic situation experienced by various countries. Several countries, where 60% of the populations have been vaccinated, are still undergoing a surge in the transmission of Covid-19 cases. This happens because the community disobeys being disciplined in implementing the set health protocols.
Admittedly, the cooperation of all parties is the main requirement to shake off from this pandemic. The public must continue to apply health protocols. The government should accelerate the vaccination program, and maintain the health system. However, the government must not be careless with hoaxes related to the pandemic and vaccines that still exist today. The key to breaking these hoaxes is to establish good communication between the government and the public. This communication is so essential so that the public fully understand the government's program related to the Covid-19 pandemic. As a result, they are not easily carried away by hoaxes.