Jakarta: The Health Ministry will accelerate the administration of the third dose or booster vaccination in Jakarta, Bogor, Depok, Tangerang, and Bekasi as an anticipatory measure against a potential spike in Omicron cases.
“Apart from (tightening) health protocols and surveillance, we will ensure accelerating booster vaccinations for the community in Jabodetabek, so that they will be ready when the Omicron wave rises quickly and high," Health Minister Budi Gunadi Sadikin noted in a ministerial press statement regarding the results of the limited meeting on evaluation of Public Activity Restrictions (PPKM) here on Sunday.
Sadikin remarked that most or over 90 percent of the local transmissions of the Omicron variant would occur in Jakarta. To this end, he deemed it necessary to take precautionary measures against a surge in cases in Jakarta that could affect the surrounding regions, such as Bogor, Depok, Tangerang, and Bekasi.
The minister drew attention to President Joko Widodo's directions to ensure that the public should not panic but instead remain vigilant to the current conditions by tightening the implementation of health protocols.
In addition, he pressed for tightening the implementation of the PeduliLindungi application and increasing testing, tracing, and the number of isolation centers.
Moreover, Sadikin appealed to the community to reduce mobility and avoid crowds. People are also advised not to travel abroad and avoid non-essential travel outside the city.
“If possible, do it through Zoom (video conferencing application) instead. It will help reduce Omicron transmission that is forecast to rise quickly and high in Jabodetabek in the next few weeks,” he added.
The first case of COVID-19 was confirmed in Indonesia in March 2020. According to data provided by the COVID-19 Handling Task Force, as of January 16, 2022, at least 4,271,649 people have tested positive for COVID-19 in the country, while 4,118,874 people have recovered, and 144,170 people have succumbed to the virus.
On December 15, 2021, the Health Ministry found the first Omicron case in Indonesia. As of January 15, 2022, the ministry had recorded as many as 748 Omicron cases in the country.