World

Overworked Jakarta doctors say coronavirus 'not under control'

JAKARTA: Doctors in the Indonesian capital warned yesterday the pandemic is "not under control", with intensive care units nearing full capacity and the city ordering new lockdown measures amid a spike in infections.

Indonesia posted a record high 3,861 positive cases yesterday, taking its total to 207,203.

There were also 120 deaths, taking total fatalities to 8,456.

Jakarta has recorded more than 1,000 new cases on average each day this month, placing considerable strain on hospitals in the world's fourth most populous nation.

The occupancy rate of isolation rooms at 67 coronavirus referral hospitals stands at 77 per cent, while ICU occupancy is 83 per cent, according to the Jakarta administration.

"It is like we have been running a marathon since March. We are exhausted," said Dr Erlina Burhan, a pulmonologist from Persahabatan Hospital.

"The situation is not under control."

The number of patients being treated for suspected cases of Covid-19 tripled from July to last month at Persahabatan.

"The government should anticipate the rise in cases by adding more medical facilities in hospitals… but the need of the medical workers needs to be anticipated as well," said Indonesia's medical association spokesman Halik Malik.

"Doctors are forced to work overtime, fatigued amidst the low protection," he added.

Jakarta Governor Anies Baswedan on Wednesday reimposed lockdown measures starting next Monday, with residents told to work, study and pray at home.

The Philippines confirmed 3,821 more cases- the most in 11 days - and 80 deaths.

Its total confirmed cases have increased to 248,947, the most in South-east Asia, while deaths have reached 4,066.

Malaysia saw cases rise again yesterday after they dipped the previous day. There were 45 new cases, the New Straits Times reported, compared with 24 the previous day.

Malaysia now has 9,628 cases, with the death toll remaining at 128.

India reported record jumps in infections and deaths yesterday, taking its tally past 4.4 million.

In just 24 hours, 95,735 new infections were detected, with 1,172 deaths, the highest single-day mortality figure in more than a month, to push the toll beyond 75,000. - REUTERS

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