Monthly Content #2: Emergency PPKM: The Essentials
As we all know, by the end of June, COVID-19 cases in Indonesia increased rapidly. Moreover, the number of infected COVID-19 cases caused by the Delta variant which is more transmissible is quite high. Considering this issue, the Government decided to impose emergency public activity restrictions (Pemberlakuan Pembatasan Kegiatan Masyarakat Darurat). Based on the Instruction of Minister Home Affairs Number 15 of 2021 on the Determination of the Emergency PPKM in Java and Bali, activities within some areas in Java and Bali will be restricted and strictly enforced to reduce the spread of COVID-19.
How is the Emergency PPKM going?
During Emergency PPKM, non-essential business sectors are required to implement a 100 percent work from home (WFH) policy while the workers of critical and essential sectors are allowed to work from their office by having a Worker Registration Certificate (STRP) or other certificate issued by the local government. Teaching and learning activities must be carried out online. Shopping activities at supermarkets and traditional markets are only allowed to operate until 8.00 PM with 50% of maximum visitor capacity, while shopping centers or malls are temporarily closed.
Has the target of Emergency PPKM been achieved?
Through the Instruction of the Minister of Home Affairs 15/2021, the Government sets a testing target for each district or city. The National COVID-19 Task Force claims that the target can be achieved three weeks after Emergency PPKM is imposed.
Unfortunately, as of July 20th, the target of emergency PPKM hasn't been achieved. The data from the Ministry of Health shows that the national testing capacity is still at 127.000 examinations in a day meanwhile the Government targeted 324.283 examinations in a day. The positivity rate is expected to be lowered to 10%, but the number remains at 25%. During Emergency PPKM, the Government also targeted to lower the people's mobility by 30 percent, but the data shows that it is only lowered by 20%.
As many as 50.937 Indonesians received their second dose of the COVID-19 vaccine on July 20th, taking the number of fully vaccinated people to 16.451.288. However, this number is still far from the target which is 208.265.720 fully vaccinated people.
Pro’s and Con’s about Vaccine
Even though the Government distributes vaccines for free, many people still don’t want to get vaccinated. Based on a survey conducted by Lembaga Survey Indonesia, 36.4% of respondents were not willing to be vaccinated. The reasons were various, such as fear of vaccine side effects or the assumption that vaccines are just a trick by pharmaceutical companies to gain profit.
Why Should We Get Vaccinated?
A vaccine is not a cure of a disease, it supports the formulation of specific body immunity so the person who is vaccinated will be protected from getting infected by a virus or experiencing an acute disease. COVID-19 vaccines are not experimental. They went through all the required stages of clinical trials. Extensive testing and monitoring have shown that COVID-19 vaccines are safe and effective. COVID-19 vaccines also help keep you from getting seriously ill even if you do get COVID-19. Getting vaccinated may also protect people around you, particularly people at increased risk for severe illness from COVID-19.
Extended PPKM: is it good or bad?
The Government has officially decided to extend the PPKM until August 2nd which comes after the issuance of the Instruction of the Minister of Home Affairs 24/2021 and Instruction of the Minister of Home Affairs 25/2021. The official instruction states that several regions are measured by PPKM Level 4 and Level 3 based on potential COVID-19 transmission spread. Areas classified under these levels must continue to restrict public activity until August 2nd.
But, the alarming surge in infections has raised doubts over its efficacy in reducing daily cases during that time frame. However, the Government considers that the PPKM is still the most appropriate policy to control COVID-19 transmissions because it can be applied without killing the people's economy. What do you think about this?
What to do during PPKM?
Stay at home
The fewer people you’re around, the lower your chance of infection. When you stay home, you help stop the spread to others, too. Try to stay out of crowded places.
Wear your mask, wash your hands, and watch your distance
When you have to go to public places, make sure you obey the health protocols. Wash your hands well and often. Wear a mask and practice social distancing to protect yourself.
Double down on physical self-care — especially exercise. Research shows that a mere 12-minute walk is sufficient to create an upbeat, happy mood. You can also do meditation to increase feel-good neurochemicals, as it reduces stress hormones such as adrenaline and cortisol.
With all the controversy of the prolonged PPKM, after all the Government aims to reduce the number of cases of COVID-19 that has been increasing rapidly. Maybe during PPKM, you can't carry out activities as usual, but PPKM is done for the common good. All in all, we hope that you stay safe and healthy. Let’s survive this together so we can meet and hang out in real life soon!