COVID-19: Govt mobilizes Puskesmas to step up contact tracing

COVID-19: Govt mobilizes Puskesmas to step up contact tracing

A screenshot of Minister of Research and Technology, Bambang Brodjonegoro (left), with Deputy Health Minister Dante Saksono in Jakarta on Tuesday. (ANTARA/Andi Firdaus)

A total of 80-100 thousand Puskesmas and Bhabin Kamtibmas (community police) officers will be deployed. We will mobilize them to help trace COVID-19 patients
Jakarta (ANTARA) - The Health Ministry is seeking to boost the strength of officers at the Community Health Center (Puskesmas) and members of the National Security and Protection Agency (Bhabin Kamtibmas) in each region to improve contact tracing efforts.

 

“A total of 80-100 thousand Puskesmas and Bhabin Kamtibmas (community police) officers will be deployed. We will mobilize them to help trace COVID-19 patients," Deputy Health Minister Dante Saksono informed at the COVID-19 Pandemic Year Anniversary webinar entitled ‘Indonesian Innovation for Indonesia Recovers’, here on Tuesday.

 

Detection of COVID-19 patients through tracing is one of the efforts being undertaken to control the pandemic more intensively in the upstream sector, he pointed out.

 

By strengthening tracing efforts, the mortality rate in the population is expected to be curtailed as potentially severe cases would be identified more quickly, he added.

 

"In this case, people will be identified, and will not just have to wait for a diagnosis," he noted.

 

As part of tracing efforts, officers will be deployed to examine residents who have been in close contact with COVID-19 patients so any transmission can be detected quickly, he explained.

 

Saksono said the stigma around coronavirus patients in the community is still impeding tracing efforts.

 

People’s fear of being isolated due to exposure to COVID-19 has led to obstacles in tracing efforts.

 

However, Dante said he is optimistic that efforts to reduce the mortality rate will bring better results if tracing efforts are optimized and testing accuracy is improved. (INE)


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