Indonesia Reports Highest Single-Day Rise in Covid-19 Cases
Jakarta. The Indonesian government announced on Sunday there had been 181 confirmed Covid-19 cases over the last 24 hours to bring the country's total to 2,273, the highest surge in a day since the first case was reported in late February.
Seven more patients died to bring the total death toll to 198, while 14 patients recovered to overall recoveries of 164.
Government’s Covid-19 Task Force spokesman Achmad Yurianto said the new cases emerged in 13 provinces, with Jakarta reporting 96 cases in the weekend alone.
The capital city is home to roughly 50 percent of the national figure, with 1,124 cases overall, followed by West Java (252), East Java (188) and Banten (177).
With little signs for the curve to flatten, Achmad said wearing face mask is now mandatory for all Indonesians when they leave home.
“From today, we follow the WHO instruction for anybody to wear face mask. We all must wear face masks,” Acmad said in a video conference in Jakarta.
"But surgical masks and N95 respirators are intended for medical workers only. Other people should wear the regular fabric masks," he added.
Achmad said the continued transmissions across the country were mostly attributed to the lack of discipline among the people in implementing the calls to remain at home, wear face masks, avoid public gatherings and frequently wash hands.
“It’s very likely that many people around us carry this virus asymptomatically, we never know,” he said.
Indonesia is facing a daunting task to contain the spread of the illness due to its limited testing capability and the small number of tests already conducted.
Achmad said only 9,712 Covid-19 tests have been conducted as of Saturday, in a country of more than 272 million. By comparison, Malaysia with a population of less than a third of that of its Southeast Asian neighbor has conducted around 52,000 tests.