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Jakarta Post

Two hospital directors die of COVID-19 as Indonesian doctors call for transparency

  • Moch. Fiqih Prawira Adjie

    The Jakarta Post

Jakarta   /   Wed, April 1, 2020   /   05:58 pm
Two hospital directors die of COVID-19 as Indonesian doctors call for transparency A healthcare worker wears personal protective equipment while inspecting an isolation tent for COVID-19 patients at Dr. Bratanata Hospital in Jambi on March 16. (Antara/Wahdi Septiawan.)

The Indonesian Medical Association (IDI) has announced that two more doctors died after contracting the COVID-19 coronavirus during their service battling the pandemic.

IDI spokesperson Halik Malik said that Efrizal Syamsudin, the director of Prabumulih General Hospital in South Sumatra, died on Monday at Mohammad Hoesin General Hospital in Palembang, South Sumatra. He was declared to be a patient under close monitoring (PDP) for the disease and his test results, which came after his passing, were positive for COVID-19.

“[Efrizal’s death] has been confirmed to the head of South Sumatra’s chapter of IDI. Based on that report, IDI offers [our] condolences and appreciation for the service of our colleagues,” Halik told The Jakarta Post on Tuesday.

Ratih Purwarini, the director of Duta Indah Hospital in North Jakarta, died on Tuesday at the Pelni General Hospital in West Jakarta after showing symptoms of COVID-19 before her death.

Halik said that she was previously admitted to Eka Hospital in Serpong, South Tangerang, where her COVID-19 test results later came back positive.

“The regional chapters of IDI said that the two doctors are very dedicated to leading their respective hospitals, including taking part in their hospitals’ vigilance and response measure to the coronavirus outbreak,” he said.

IDI said that 12 doctors, all of whom were its members, have died since the country started getting COVID-19 cases. The government announced the first two cases of COVID-19 in the country on March 2. There have been 1,677 cases that resulted in 157 deaths and 103 recoveries as of Wednesday.

“Out of the 12, 11 of them either tested positive or were being observed for COVID-19, while one died of exhaustion while handling the pandemic,” he said

Doctors and medical workers are at high risk of contracting the disease as they tend patients and suspects on a regular basis. The scarcity of personal protective equipment (PPE), such as masks, gloves and hazmat suits, in the country leaves them more exposed to the disease.

Read also: COVID-19: Inadequate medical supplies take toll on lives of Indonesian medical workers

The government has taken several measures to distribute PPE to hospitals and other healthcare units and prioritizes COVID-19 rapid testing for medical workers. It also provides updates on the number of cases, deaths and recoveries every day.

Halik, however, asked the government to provide more detailed information regarding positive and tested patients. 

“We really emphasize that the data of medical staff, at least in professional organizations such as doctors and other health professionals, can be provided by the government so each of the organizations can take measures,” he added.