TEMPO.CO, Jakarta - Coordinating Political, Legal, and Security Affairs Minister Mahfud MD echoed the government’s plans to grant "Bintang Jasa" (Stars of Service) awards to honor medical personnel, who died while conducting duties to handle the COVID-19 pandemic.
"We have observed that many doctors also fell victims to the disease while delivering their services. It might be owing to fatigue, stress, and then contracting COVID-19 and (thereafter) died," Mahfud stated during a virtual press conference here on Saturday.
The government is heedful of the health workers, who are striving ceaselessly to handle the COVID-19 crisis.
For medical personnel, who died in the line of duty while delivering service to deal with the COVID-19 pandemic, the government would bestow the Stars and offer compensation worth Rp300 million (some US$20,575) each.
In the first stage, the Stars will be presented to 22 health workers on August 13.
Of the 22 health workers, nine will be granted the Pratama (Primary) Star, while 13 will receive the Nararya (Glorified) Stars.
The would-be recipients of the awards were decided by the Council for Title, Merit, and Mark of Honor.
"It is a symbolic form of the government's respect for those who died. Of course, no one wanted to die for an award or compensation," he stated.
The government's COVID-19 Response Task Force and the Ministry of Health have continued to work intensively to record data on health workers, who died while conducting their duties to handle COVID-19.
The government has, so far, shown concern for health workers dealing with COVID-19 by providing monthly incentives to specialist doctors, general practitioners, and non-medical health workers.
Specialist doctors handling COVID-19 are offered monthly Rp15 million (some US$1,000); general practitioners, Rp10 million monthly; and non-medical health workers, Rp7.5 million per month.
As of August 1, 2020, at least 72 doctors had died of COVID-19 in Indonesia, Halik Malik, a spokesman of the Indonesian Medical Association (IDI) told Kompas daily.
No less than 72 doctors had died from COVID-19 in Indonesia, the Indonesian Medical Association (IDI) spokesperson Halik Malik stated. “Based on information received by IDI, at least 72 doctors are reported to have died from COVID-19 or while being a patient under surveillance [COVID-19 PDP],” Malik notified Kompas.com
President Joko Widodo (Jokowi) announced the country's first confirmed COVID-19 cases on March 2, 2020.
As of Saturday (Aug 8), the tally of COVID-19 cases in Indonesia had reached 123,503, and the death toll touched 5,658.
On Saturday, 2,277 fresh cases were reported in the country within a period of 24 hours.