Jokowi: Rapid Coronavirus Testing Starts in South Jakarta

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Mahinda Arkyasa

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  • A staffer of Soekarno-Hatta Airport scans President Joko Widodo's body temperature when the President visits the airport to check on its preparations to face the COVID-19 outbreak at the airport's Terminal III, Tangerang, Banten. ANTARA

    A staffer of Soekarno-Hatta Airport scans President Joko Widodo's body temperature when the President visits the airport to check on its preparations to face the COVID-19 outbreak at the airport's Terminal III, Tangerang, Banten. ANTARA

    TEMPO.CO, JakartaPresident Joko "Jokowi" Widodo announced that the government's rapid coronavirus testing will officially commence Friday, March 20, which will be focused in South Jakarta. 

    "The rapid tests will start today in the area with traceable contacts from positive coronavirus patients, which is South Jakarta," said the president at the Merdeka Palace. 

    The president asserts that appointed medical personnel will conduct proactive door-to-door tests. "The medics will visit homes."

    The process of conducting rapid coronavirus testing will only need blood samples from individuals tested by the medical team. This is deemed to be the quickest and most time-efficient way to test whether a person has contracted the virus that first sparked in Wuhan province, China earlier this year. 

    Sample testing obtained from the rapid tests also does not require a biosecurity level 2 laboratory and enables testing at general medical labs. 

    President Jokowi did not reveal the details as to why he chose South Jakarta as the location for the test. However, the decision corresponds to the fact that Indonesia's first and second coronavirus infection case was traced back to the dance floor in a restaurant located in Kemang, South Jakarta. Indonesia's first coronavirus patient, who has recovered, initially transmitted the disease from a Japanese friend.

    DEWI NURITA