Confirmed Omicron cases in Indonesia reach 506: health ministry

13-Jan-2022 Intellasia | AntaraNews | 7:05 AM Print This Post

The health ministry announced that the number of confirmed cases of the Omicron variant in Indonesia had increased by 92 as of Wednesday, bringing the total Omicron case count to 506.

“Of the 506 people infected with Omicron, 415 were Indonesian citizens and foreign nationals who had a history of international travel,” spokesperson for COVID-19 vaccinations at the health ministry, Siti Nadia Tarmizi, said in a statement here on Wednesday.

Meanwhile, the number of cases of local transmission was 84, she added.

According to Tarmizi, the majority of people infected with Omicron have not experienced any symptoms or only have mild symptoms so they have not required hospitalisation.

Therefore, she said, the Ministry of Health is providing health services remotely to COVID-19 patients who are self-isolating at home.

“We are working with 17 telemedicine platforms to provide doctor consultation services and free drug delivery services to COVID-19 patients who are undergoing isolation at home,” she said.

She said that the Ministry of Health has included the use of the drugs Monulpiravir and Plaxlovid in the treatment of COVID-19 patients suffering from mild symptoms.

Tarmizi then appealed to residents to be ready to face the Omicron wave because the variant spreads very quickly.

In addition to enforcing travel rules and strict quarantine provisions, the government is seeking to increase citizens’ immunity against the coronavirus by providing third or booster vaccinations to residents aged 18 years and over, she noted.

Coordinating minister for Maritime Affairs and Investment, Luhut Binsar Pandjaitan, earlier estimated that the peak of Omicron infections in Indonesia will be reached in early February 2022.

The estimation is based on observations of other countries’ experiences, where the Omicron variant reached its peak in the range of 40 days, which was faster than the Delta variant, he explained.

“For Indonesia, we estimate the peak of the Omicron wave will occur in early February,” Pandjaitan informed in a video statement received here on Tuesday.

Most Omicron patients are expected to experience mild symptoms, so the government has prepared a different strategy from the one used for handling Delta cases, he added.

The Omicron variant has been detected in 150 countries and has triggered a new wave of infections with higher peaks in several countries, he noted.

According to Pandjaitan, it is possible that Indonesia will experience a similar wave.

“We do not need to panic but remain vigilant,” he said.

He emphasised that Indonesia is now more prepared to face any potential COVID-19 wave that the Omicron variant may cause.

This readiness is supported by higher vaccination rates, much higher testing and tracing capacity, and a much better-prepared health system in terms of medicines, hospital beds, health personnel, oxygen, and centralised isolation facilities, he said.

“Including Molnupiravir (COVID-19 oral treatment) from Merck, which the minister of Health has imported,” he added.


Category: Indonesia

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