Gov’t Issues Policies Following COVID-19 Endemic Transition
In a bid to respond to the improvement of SARS-CoV-2 virus control around the globe, the COVID-19 Handling Task Force has issued Circular Number 1 of 2023 on Health Protocols during the Transition Period of Endemic Corona Virus Disease 2019 (COVID-19).
The issuance of the circular is based on developments in controlling the SARS-CoV-2 virus considering the spread of cases in the world and Indonesia is increasingly declined, high herd immunity, and relaxation of transportation policies in several countries, as well as the results of cross-sectoral evaluations in controlling the pandemic.
“It is necessary to adjust the control mechanism to the health protocol during the endemic transition period to prevent transmission of COVID-19,” the circular reads.
The objective of the circular is to implement health protocols during the endemic transition period for domestic and international travelers, implementation of large-scale social activities, and activities in public facilities. Meanwhile, the aim is to provide maximum protection to the people from the transmission of COVID-19.
The health protocol provisions stipulated in the circular are as follows:
- Domestic and international travelers, persons in public facilities, and persons in large-scale activities must continue to try to protect themselves personally from the transmission of COVID-19 and:
- It is encouraged to receive the COVID-19 vaccination until the second booster or fourth dose, especially for people with a high risk of transmitting COVID-19.
- It is permissible not to wear a face mask if one in a healthy condition and not at risk of contracting or transmitting COVID-19 and it is encouraged to continue to wear a properly-covered face mask if one in an unhealthy condition or is prone to being exposed to COVID-19, prior to and when traveling and performing activities in public facilities.
- It is encouraged to carry hand sanitizer and/or use soap and running water to wash hands regularly, especially if one has come into contact with public objects.
- For people who are in an unhealthy condition and are prone to being exposed to or transmitting COVID-19, it is encouraged to keep a distance or avoid crowds to prevent transmission of COVID-19.
- It is encouraged to keep using the SATUSEHAT app to monitor personal health.
- Organizers and operators of transportation facilities, public facilities, and large-scale activities together with the local governments are encouraged to:
- Continue to protect the public through preventive and promotive measures to control the transmission of COVID-19.
- Continue to supervise, guide, control, and enforce the implementation of health protocols to control the transmission of COVID-19.
The circular also urged ministries and institutions related to the implementation of health protocols for domestic and international travelers, large-scale activities, and public facilities during the COVID-19 pandemic to immediately issue legal instruments that are in line with and do not conflict with existing legal provisions.
“This circular comes into force from June 9 2023, with the note that restrictions may be tightened back if there is a significant increase in cases,” the circular reads.
With the issuance of the circular, some of previous circulars issued are revoked and declared null and void, as follows:
- Circular Number 19 of 2021 on the Establishment and Optimization of the Health Protocol Task Force for Wearing Masks, Maintaining Distance, and Washing Hands in Public Facilities in Handling the Corona Virus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) Pandemic;
- Circular Number 20 of 2022 on Health Protocols for Large-Scale Activities during the Corona Virus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) Pandemic;
- Circular Number 24 of 2022 on Health Protocols for Domestic Travel during the Corona Virus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) Pandemic and its addendum; and
- Circular Number 25 of 2022 on Health Protocols for International Travel during the Corona Virus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) Pandemic and its two addendums. (UN) (GWH/MUR)