"The University of Indonesia's Faculty of Medicine and the Indonesia Medical Education and Research Institute (IMERI) have intensively been conducting COVID-19-related research projects," Dean of UI's Faculty of Medicine Prof.Ari Fahrial Syam said.
According to Syam, a further research on the ministry's eucalyptus-based COVID-19 treatment was needed to unveil the antiviral effects and effectiveness of the eucalyptus-based products for handling the novel coronavirus cases.
The research projects focusing on the efficacy of the eucalyptus-based products for handling the COVID-19 cases remain at the cell level, and in vitro stage. They are not yet directed specifically for the SARS-CoV-2, the coronavirus that triggers COVID-19.
Regarding the handling of COVID-19, he said the Indonesian people, media, and government show a high expectation. As a result, research projects that are still conducted at the cell level are then claimed to have produced antivirus drugs.
Meanwhile, Head of the Veterinary Research Agency at the Ministry of Agriculture Indi Dharmayanti revealed earlier that the ministry's COVID-19-related innovations remain in the in vitro stages that demand further research efforts.
She clarified that the eucalyptus-based COVID-19 innovative product is, actually, not a medicine because a further research on it still goes on.
"Instead, it is an extraction resulting from distillation method to kill the virus that we have used at laboratory. After a screening process, the eucaplyptus is able to kill the influenza virus and even coronavirus," she claimed.
Regarding this COVID-19-related innovative product, the Ministry of Agriculture has officially received a patent for its innovation. It has also collaborated with PT Eagle Indo Pharma (Cap Lang) for its massive production.
The Indonesian Government has supported various parties to conduct research and innovation projects to assist the nation's battle against the novel coronavirus pandemic.
The government-sponsored research and innovation projects prioritize four areas: prevention, filtering and diagnosis; medical equipment and supporting devices; medicines and therapies; and, social humanities.
To this end, several leading universities in Indonesia have also joined the nation's fight against the coronavirus pandemic and made concrete contributions to efforts to save lives — from developing much-needed devices to research on COVID-19 treatment.
A team of scientists from the faculties of medicine and engineering at the University of Indonesia (UI), for instance, has developed a ventilator called COVENT-20 for patients suffering from the novel coronavirus disease.
As published on UI's official website, the Indonesian Health Ministry has declared the ventilator has passed human clinical trials.
The Bandung Institute of Technology (ITB) has also developed a ventilator for COVID-19 patients, in collaboration with the Pembina Masjid Salman Foundation and Faculty of Medicine, Padjadjaran University (UNPAD).
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