45 patients in self-isolation die in Jakarta each day: Lapor COVID-19

Aerial shot of Rorotan COVID-19 cemetery in North Jakarta. Photo: Instagram/@alivikry
Aerial shot of Rorotan COVID-19 cemetery in North Jakarta. Photo: Instagram/@alivikry

Around 45 COVID-19 patients in self-isolation die in Jakarta each day while many more have died nationwide, Lapor COVID-19 said today, illustrating the severity of the country’s healthcare system collapse amid a devastating wave of the coronavirus outbreak.

Lapor COVID-19, a civil society coalition that crowdsources coronavirus information throughout the country, revealed the damning statistic during a virtual discussion about COVID-19 patients having no choice but to self-isolate due to overcrowded hospitals.

“From the Jakarta Health Agency, they on average receive 45 reports a day about self-isolating patients who died at home,” Lapor COVID-19 co-initiator Ahmad Arif said.

Ahmad added that yesterday alone, the group recorded 450 self-isolation deaths throughout Indonesia, with West Java accounting for 160 of them.

“We’re certain this is the tip of the iceberg because not all [deaths] are reported,” he said.

Many of the deceased self-isolating patients had severe symptoms and required hospital care but slipped under the radar of medical professionals, most of whom are overwhelmed treating patients in hospitals. 

Lapor COVID-19 is urging the government to make more quarantine centers for COVID-19 patients with mild to moderate symptoms available so they can be under medical supervision in case their conditions deteriorate. Jakarta has one such facility, namely the makeshift Wisma Atlet COVID-19 quarantine facility, which has been at least near full capacity for weeks now during the ongoing devastating wave of the coronavirus outbreak.

One venue that is being considered to be turned into a makeshift quarantine facility is the House of Representatives (DPR) office complex, a plan that has the support of lawmakers if the buildings weren’t so restrictive for warding patients.

Indonesia is in the midst of record-breaking daily new COVID-19 infections and deaths over the past couple of weeks. On July 11, the country recorded 36,197 new cases and 1,007 deaths.

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