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Jakarta Post

Coronavirus: Indonesia will not repatriate infected citizen from Singapore before recovery

  • Ardila Syakriah and Fadli

    The Jakarta Post

Jakarta and Batam   /   Wed, February 5, 2020   /   03:20 pm
Coronavirus: Indonesia will not repatriate infected citizen from Singapore before recovery A medical worker wearing protective gear waits to take the temperature of people in an entrance of Princess Margaret Hospital in Hong Kong on Tuesday. - Hong Kong on Tuesday become the second place outside of the Chinese mainland to report the death of a patient being treated for a new coronavirus that has so far claimed more than 490 lives. (AFP/Anthony WALLACE )

Indonesia will not repatriate its citizen in Singapore confirmed to have been infected with the novel coronavirus and who is currently under isolation treatment at the Singapore General Hospital (SGH).

The Indonesian national is a 44-year-old domestic helper who has no recent travel history to mainland China, where the coronavirus first originated and has since spread rapidly.

Her Singaporean employer has also tested positive for the coronavirus.

Foreign Ministry acting spokesperson Teuku "Faiz" Faizasyah told The Jakarta Post on Wednesday that the government would not repatriate the citizen.

"She will be treated until she recovers at a hospital there," he said.

The Indonesian Embassy in Singapore had left contact numbers that the patient could reach should she need any support, as she was currently under isolation, he added.

Faiz said that the ministry had received no information as to whether the citizen had been in contact with other migrant workers prior to her admission to the hospital. 

Read also: Indonesian maid in Singapore tests positive for coronavirus

The Straits Times reported that the Indonesian national had reported symptoms on Sunday and had not left her home since then. She was then admitted to the SGH on Monday.

Indonesian Ambassador to Singapore I Gede Ngurah Swajaya told the Post on Wednesday that the embassy would stay in contact with the SGH.

"We have confirmed that her condition is stable and she is under doctors' surveillance in the isolation room. We continuously inform our citizens about prevention steps as also suggested by the Singaporean government to its people," he said. 

The embassy said in a statement that it had received a verbal notice from Singapore's Health Ministry about the Indonesian citizen and that it could not reveal her identity because of the Personal Data Protection Act.

The Health Ministry's communicable disease prevention and control director, Wiendra Waworuntu, said on Wednesday that the case was an apparent human-to-human transmission, and as a result, Indonesia would tighten up monitoring efforts on people coming from Singapore at Indonesia's entrance points.

Indonesia has still recorded no confirmed cases of coronavirus so far.

The death toll in mainland China stood at 491 on Wednesday. Hong Kong and the Philippines have also reported one death each from the coronavirus, which has spread to more than 20 countries and infected tens of thousands people globally, Johns Hopkins CSSE reported.