Two Years of a Pandemic, Covid-19 Task Force Unveils 3 Pandemic Control Instruments – It’s been two years since the Covid-19 pandemic has hit Indonesia. Various policies were carried out, with the main aim of preventing the transmission of more Covid-19 cases and at the same time, returning community activities to normal.

Spokesman for the Covid-19 Task Force, Prof. Wiku Adisasmito, said there were three main instruments for controlling the Covid-19 pandemic. Quoted from the official website of the Covid-19 Task Force, the three things are adjusting the tightening of health protocols based on situation analysis, increasing efforts to meet vaccination needs for all and adjusting specific testing, tracing and treatment (3T) efforts according to the vulnerability of certain regions and subpopulations. The three are a comprehensive effort to suppress transmission from various directions.

More specifically, in the first instrument there were several attempts. First, the operational adjustment of the socio-economic sector is accompanied by strict monitoring of gradual openings. In the future, the bubble system policy in several regions will continue to be refined in line with the increase in regional readiness and capacity. Of course, considering community activities at vulnerable times such as long holiday periods to produce the right gas-brake policy. So that future policy adjustments are difficult to avoid.

Second, the adjustment of the health screening mechanism for foreign travelers (PPLN) is sustainable. Recently, the government has immediately imposed a reduction in the duration of quarantine according to the history of vaccination, followed by a legal product that clarifies its implementation in the field.

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Residents are active in Suropati Park, Central Jakarta, Sunday (20/2/2022). [ Winanto]
Residents are active in Suropati Park, Central Jakarta, Sunday (20/2/2022). [ Winanto]

The plan is that in line with monitoring and evaluation carried out, with a note that the condition of the case is under control, the quarantine duration policy will continue to be relaxed in line with the plan to release quarantine in early April.

In the second instrument, increasing efforts to fulfill the need for vaccination for all. First, it focuses on fulfilling the second dose of vaccination coverage nationally to reduce the risk of vulnerable populations. Given, the immunity of a person who is fully vaccinated will be more optimal.

For this reason, the strategy includes the coverage of the second dose of vaccination as an additional indicator for determining the district/city level in Java – Bali. Especially the elderly, will have an impact on reducing mortality. Because data from the Ministry of Health (January 21-February 26, 2022) stated that 57 percent of cases of death due to COVID-19 were contributed by elderly patients.

Second, intensify the booster to optimize the condition of healthy people. The government has set a distance between giving a booster dose since the second dose of vaccination for all people, without exception, which is at least 3 months after the primary vaccination is complete. So that the body’s immunity is maintained so as to minimize the chance of contracting or worsening of symptoms if sick, especially in vulnerable groups.

Third, meet the need for vaccine doses by utilizing all available resources. Evidence of the government’s concrete steps to increase access to vaccines for the community. The Indonesian Ulema Council (MUI) issued MUI Fatwa No. 8 of 2022 concerning the Red and White COVID-19 Vaccine Products produced by PT Biotis Pharmaceuticals and Universitas Airlangga (Unair) which are halal and holy for use.

Then, the third instrument is adjusting specific 3T efforts according to the vulnerability of certain regions and sub-populations. The efforts, first, are to do 3T as early as possible and pay attention to the characteristics of the variant symptoms that are most widely spread in the community.

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Currently, the Ministry of Health has issued the latest guidelines for handling cases during the Omicron wave. Where there is a peculiarity of the duration of the isolation, that is, if on the 5th day the PCR results are negative or have been isolated for 10 days, then the positive case can carry out activities including accessing public facilities.