Jakarta (ANTARA) - The World Health Organization (WHO) has not classified the Omicron EU.1.1 sub-variant as a threatening coronavirus that needs to be anticipated by countries, the Indonesian Health Ministry said.

"An EU.1.1 case has not been found in Indonesia and the WHO has not given a warning because it is still included in the variant under monitoring (VUM) list," head of the ministry's communication and public services bureau, Siti Nadia Tarmizi, informed in Jakarta on Wednesday.

She said that variants in the VUM category are suspected of having viral characteristics that could potentially trigger the next wave of COVID-19. A VUM has the potential to be upgraded into a variant of interest or variant of concern (VoC), which must be anticipated.

Even though the COVID-19 pandemic has ended in Indonesia, the government has continued to educate people to remain vigilant, but stay calm and not panic, Tarmizi said.

"Post-pandemic health protection is personal responsibility after the government's intervention in terms of health protocols during the pandemic," she added.

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She said that cases of COVID-19 could increase in Indonesia by even more than expected. However, as long as the death rate and health facilities can be maintained optimally, the situation will not be classified as a health problem.

"Currently, COVID-19 has become a disease that can be treated. If mortality is still low, it will not be a problem. The same goes for bed occupancy ratio (BOR)—as long as it is still sufficient, it will be fine," she added.

Separately, director general of disease management and control (P2P) at the ministry, Maxi Rein Rondonuwu, said that the endemic phase marks a transition from the government intervening in people's health to health becoming people's own responsibility.

"Especially in terms of health protocols. The change from pandemic to endemic has changed people's behavior as well. It will be people's awareness to wear masks and wash hands if they experience influenza," he added.

He said that independent isolation interventions for COVID-19 patients will become the community's responsibility.

"We recommend that you continue to follow the COVID-19 protocols and if you have severe symptoms, please visit the health facility," he advised.

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Translator: Andi Firdaus, Resinta S
Editor: Yuni Arisandy Sinaga
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