Indonesia has seen an increase in its COVID-19 positivity rate - the percentage of those tested found to be infected - in the past month, COVID-19 task force spokesperson Wiku Adisasmito said on Tuesday.
The country recorded a national positivity rate average of 14 percent, an 0.7 percent increase from July.
"The national average positivity rate is about 14 percent," Wiku said in a press conference on Tuesday.
The country's positivity rate far exceeds the World Health Organization (WHO) standard of 5 percent for entering the “new normal”.
Wiku also said the country had fallen far short of WHO’s recommended testing rate.
"WHO recommends performing one test per 1,000 population per week, meaning with a population of around 260 million people, Indonesia needs to conduct 267,700 tests per week," Wiku said. "However, we were only able to test 95,463 people in the past week, 35.6 percent of the testing rate recommended by WHO.”
Wiku said the government was working hard to increase the PCR testing rate by improving its laboratories’ testing capacity.
"We'll increase the capacity of the 320 laboratories [that are running PCR tests] by improving human resources and working hours efficiency so that they can perform optimum testing," he said.
Indonesia recorded on Tuesday 2,447 new cases of COVID-19, bringing the total number of infections nationwide to 157,859, with 112.867 recoveries and 6.858 fatalities. (nal)