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Jakarta Post

Swab scandal, quarantine breaches call Indonesia's tourism reopening into question

The Jakarta Post Image
Travelers wait in line for a rapid COVID-19 antigen test at Terminal 2 of Soekarno-Hatta International Airport in Tangerang, Banten, on Dec. 22, 2020.(Antara/Fauzan)
Ardila Syakriah and Apriadi Gunawan
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Jakarta/Medan   ●   Sun, May 2, 2021

While Indonesia plans to reopen to international tourists in the near future, medical policy failures, including the reuse of COVID-19 test kits and breaches of mandatory quarantine, have called the country’s preparation into question.

The government has established several travel rules in an effort to reduce COVID-19 transmission risk. Travelers must present negative results from either PCR or antigen tests, and people arriving from outside the country are required to quarantine at designated facilities for five days. But with weak policy oversight, some have treated the rules as an opportunity for illicit profit and others have found ways around the regulations entirely.

In North Sumatra, the police recently named five workers from state-owned clinical laboratory company Kimia Farma Diagnostika suspects for allegedly reusing up to 150 rapid antigen test kit...

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