PPKM Level 1 implementation indicates easing community mobility: govt

JAKARTA (ANTARA) – The implementation of Level 1 of the Community Activity Restrictions (PPKM) is evidence that the government has facilitated mobility, the COVID-19 Handling Task Force said.

“PPKM Level 1 applies mobility facilitations but still prioritizes health protocols,” noted Alexander K. Ginting, chief of the Health Support Subdivision of the COVID-19 Task Force’s Emergency Division, in Jakarta on Friday.

Ginting noted that at this point, community COVID-19 cases were still largely caused by the Omicron BA.4 and BA.5 subvariants.

According to Health Ministry data on Thursday, September 22, the daily increase in COVID-19 cases reached 2,162, with the highest cases recorded in Jakarta.

Meanwhile, the number of recovered cases rose by 4,051, with the death toll reaching 18 and the highest mortality recorded in Central Java.

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The latest PPKM extension regulations are set out in the Java-Bali Interior Minister’s Order No. 42 of 2022 and the Outside Java-Bali Interior Minister’s Order No. 43 of 2022, valid until October 3, 2022.

The decision to expand PPKM is based on expert input that all regions in Indonesia have PPKM Level 1 status as the positive rate for COVID-19 is still above the World Health Organization (WHO) standard of five percent of the population is equivalent to .

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Ginting noted that PPKM still needs to take the first booster shot to prevent potential imported cases from occurring due to people’s travel activities.

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“It is true that doses one and two in Jakarta, Bogor, Depok, Tangerang and Bekasi (Jabodetabek) are already above 70 percent and the booster dose is above 50 percent. However, immunity to COVID-19 decreases over time,” he explained.

According to Ginting, regulations for domestic and international travelers based on the third vaccination or booster vaccination would have to be applied.

He also reminded the public to always wear masks on the streets, in the office and in public spaces.

“Anyone suffering from symptoms such as cough, flu, fever, sore throat and headache should not go anywhere and just stay at home,” he said.

Ginting stressed that vulnerable and co-morbid groups of people also need to remain vigilant and get the booster shots immediately.

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Data from the Department of Health’s COVID-19 immunization dashboard as of Thursday, September 22, showed that immunization coverage of vulnerable populations, such as the elderly, is only about 6.66 million people out of a total target of 21.55 million.

Meanwhile, the members of the vulnerable group and the general public who received the booster vaccine totaled 43.81 million people out of the 141.21 million target population.

“All officials in public areas, offices, factories, schools, markets, malls and places of worship must act as task forces to remind and support one another, especially for using the PeduliLindendi application,” explained Ginting.

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