Surabaya, E Java (ANTARA) - The Prosperous Justice Party (PKS) urged the East Java provincial government to intensify efforts to save and protect doctors and paramedics on the frontline in Indonesia's war on the spread of new coronavirus disease (COVID-19).

"The medical workers are on the frontline in handling the impact of this COVID-19 outbreak. Without them, we cannot do anything. Hence, the government is obliged to ensure their safety and security," General Secretary of the PKS-East Java Office Lilik Hendarwati remarked.

However, the government and all related stakeholders in society should be more heedful of the lack of personal protective equipment (PPE), Hendarwati told journalists in Surabaya on Friday.

The East Java provincial government must offer sufficient complete PPEs for doctors and paramedics; adequate isolation wards at all hospitals; as well as all other necessary goods, including ample stocks of hand sanitizers, Hendarwati stated.

"We have sought reallocation of funds from the central government to meet all these needs to tackle the coronavirus pandemic. This must be prioritized," this member of the East Java legislative body stated.

In meeting the needs of doctors and paramedics in Surabaya, the capital of East Java Province, the PKS-East Java Office donated 2,500 surgical face masks and hand sanitizers to several hospitals in the city.

"Of course, this is not sufficient as compared to the requirements of our medical workers," General Chairman of the PKS-East Java Office Irwan Setiawan stated.

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As of Thursday, COVID-19 had spread to 27 provinces in Indonesia, with 893 confirmed COVID-19 cases, while death toll from this virus had reached 78, and 35 patients were discharged from hospitals.

Jakarta continues to record the highest number of confirmed COVID-19 cases and death toll, while the Indonesian government's data indicated that East Java had 59 confirmed cases.

COVID-19, which initially struck in the Chinese city of Wuhan at the end of December 2019, has claimed some 24 thousand lives and infected no less than 510 thousand people in 195 nations and territories worldwide, according to media reports.

According to CNN, the number of confirmed COVID-19 cases in the US had reached at least 82 thousand or surpassed those of China and Italy, while the country's death toll from this deadly virus was recorded at no less than 1,195.

Taking into account the rising death toll and spread of the virus, the World Health Organization (WHO) has declared the coronavirus outbreak a global pandemic.

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Translator: Rahmad Nasution
Editor: Sri Haryati
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