Indonesian Red Cross workers carry placards to encourage people to stay home at Athletes' Village in Kemayoran, Jakarta, on March 21, 2020. (Antara Photo/M Risyal Hidayat)

Everyone Must Work Together to Prevent Year-End Covid-19 Surge

NOVEMBER 25, 2021

Jakarta. The government calls everyone to work together to prevent a Covid-19 surge during the year-end holiday season. Raising the public awareness of the stringent, level-three community restriction, or PPKM, as well as the importance of health protocols, have become a must.

Massive mobility during a pandemic can fuel an increase in infections. The government has imposed several regulations to keep the transmission under control. But for these policies to be implemented optimally would require everyone’s participation.

According to Indonesian Doctor Association (IDI) chairman Adib Khumaidi, the public plays a vital role in preventing case surges. At the same time, health workers —along with the government as the policy maker— must keep their guards up. The Covid-19 task force should also continue to remind the public to comply with the health protocols.

“But what is most important is that we must maintain the current standards. Don’t try to lower the bar,” Adib told a conference on Tuesday.

Enhanced coordination in the regions across the archipelago is crucial in keeping the coronavirus at bay.

“We believe that friends in the regions have learnt a lesson from the previous Covid-19 spike, with continuous preparation and coordination. So we are ready if a surge ever comes, but hopefully, that does not happen,” Adib said, while also highlighting that the health workers must also be well-equipped.

“Not just manpower, but also medicine, health equipment, and oxygen [supply]. But I believe that friends in the region are ready in terms of manpower,” Adib added.

Although Covid-19 infections in the country have calmed down, it is best to stay alert, considering how the virus keeps changing and growing. And in coexisting with Covid-19, we cannot intervene against the virus. It is us as the host that must try to adapt in order to survive.

“Maintaining a healthy lifestyle and health protocols is crucial, because we are in the middle of trying to adapt. As well as a healthy environment,” Adib said.

Falla Adinda —a doctor and a member of the mitigation division at the Covid-19 task force— highlighted the local governments’ role in lowering transmission risks during the year-end break. This includes preventing crowds and encouraging the public to follow the rules.

“As long as there is no mobility, [we can] suppress infections or transmission,” Falla said. 

Falla asked people to understand that the mobility restriction is not there to hinder the economic recovery, but to keep Covid-19 under control. This way, Indonesia can maintain its improving pandemic situation.

“This [PPKM] is to save what is most important. And that is human lives,” Falla said.

The public is now more aware of health protocols as they adapt to the new habits.

“The changes in [their] habits are all thanks to the public, media, health workers, among others, who continue to remind each other that this is the new normal,” Falla said.

According to Falla, the public must keep in mind that it is best to be careful at all times. As well as to be aware of the Covid-19 data and conditions of wherever they are at. This awareness will help them become more adaptive to the pandemic developments.

“Basically, health protocols have not changed ever since the pandemic dawned. By implementing those things, at least we can contribute to lowering the case. So it is not us that spreads or catches the virus. We must keep following the [health protocols],” she said. 

Productive Things to Do at Home

With limited mobility, people are spending their time at home doing productive things. This includes arts and crafts, which is a perfect parent-child bonding activity. 

Prakardus — a arts-and-crafts toy made out of card boxes— can be an option to work on with your kids at home, because it comes with a manual and the necessary tools. The handiworks are items that can be used by kids, starting from lamps, pencil cases to calendars.

According to Prakardus founder Muhammad Luqman Baehaqi, people’s enthusiasm towards arts-and-crafts are increasing as they stay home. 

“Many parents and children want to spend more quality time,” Luqman said, while adding that parents want to be involved so they can strengthen their bond with their kids.

He also asked people to stay home unless necessary.

“We can synergize, support, strengthen and remind one another that even without leaving our homes, such as by using social media, mobile phones and so on,” he said

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