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Jakarta Post

Regions must prevent COVID-19 spread during long weekend: Minister Terawan

Regions must prevent COVID-19 spread during long weekend: Minister Terawan Domestic tourists spend time at the Tegallalang tourist destination in Gianyar, Bali, on Wednesday. Increasing numbers of visitors have been arriving on the resort island ahead of the extended weekend. (Antara/Fikri Yusuf)
Dyaning Pangestika
Jakarta   ●   Thu, October 29, 2020 2020-10-29 11:04 199 e22cd4161040e111d73a5626c4d5effc 1 National COVID-19,COVID-19-in-Indonesia,health-ministry,coronavirus,virus-corona,virus-korona-indonesia,Terawan-Agus-Putranto,health-minister,regional-administrations,long-weekend,maulid-of-the-Prophet-Muhammad Free

The Health Ministry has urged regional governments to enforce health protocols in order to prevent COVID-19 from spreading further during the long weekend.

The government has declared Wednesday and Friday collective leave days, surrounding the public holiday of Maulid (commemoration of birthday of Prophet Muhammad) on Thursday.

In a circular issued on Monday, Minister Terawan Agus Putranto urged regional administrations to educate the public about health protocol, including washing hands regularly, keeping a safe physical distance from others and wearing masks.

“The high number of people moving and interacting [throughout the extended weekend] carries a huge [risk] of spreading the coronavirus,” Terawan said in a statement.

Read also: Tourist regions to impose health protocols for long weekend

Terawan also encouraged the regions to promote a healthier lifestyle by, among other measures, setting up more handwashing stations in public places.

Furthermore, he urged people vulnerable to the coronavirus disease, such as senior citizens and people with comorbid diseases, not to leave home during the long weekend unless necessary.

“The key to controlling the COVID-19 outbreak is discipline in implementing health protocols,” the minister went on to say.

Indonesian health authorities saw an increase in daily and weekly COVID-19 cases during the Idul Fitri break from May 22 to 25 and during the long weekend to commemorate Independence Day in August.