A health worker collects Covid-19 rapid testing strips in Central Jakarta on Monday. (JG Photo/Yudha Baskoro)

Indonesia Reports 375 New Coronavirus Cases as Infection Rate Continues to Fluctuate

BY :ARI SUPRIYANTI RIKIN, HERU ANDRIYANTO

APRIL 21, 2020

Jakarta. Indonesia's coronavirus infection rate continues to fluctuate with 375 new confirmed cases reported on Tuesday after only 185 new cases were announced a day earlier.

Southeast Asia's largest country now has a total of 7,135 Covid-19 cases.

According to the latest official data, 95 patients have fully recovered from the infectious illness in the past 24 hours.

A total of 842 Covid-19 patients have recovered and left hospitals since the first cases were detected in early March.

Patients are declared to be fully recovered if two back-to-back tests within seven days deliver negative results. 

The country also reported 26 deaths from coronavirus on Tuesday to bring the total death toll to 616.

Covid-19 Task Force spokesman Achmad Yurianto said the outbreak has affected 257 districts and municipalities in all 34 provinces.

More cases have been detected after the government increased the number of its testing labs to 37 and started conducting more tests.

"In total, we have now collected 50,370 specimens and conducted 46,173 tests across Indonesia," Achmad said.

The task force will prioritize testing for nearly 17,000 patients under observation (PDP) for suspect coronavirus infection, he said. 

Relief Package Prone to Misappropriation

The government will begin disbursing financial aid to nine million poor families across the country to help them cope with the economic impact of the pandemic, Social Affairs Minister Juliari Batubara said in Jakarta on Tuesday.

The relief package amounts to Rp 600,000 [$38] per family per month, available for three consecutive months, Juliari told Beritasatu TV.

He admitted the relief package is prone to misappropriation since the government's controlling mechanism may not work properly amid the pandemic.

"We encourage people who find any irregularities to lodge their protests to the government or report them to the police," the minister said.

In Jakarta, the aid package will not be delivered in cash, but in the form of basic supplies such as rice, cooking oil, processed meat and milk.

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