JAKARTA: Indonesian citizens are now required to wear face masks when they are outside, the government announced on Monday (April 6), as the number of Covid-19 (coronavirus) outbreak cases rose to almost 2,500.
The order to wear a face mask is in accordance with recommendations from the World Health Organisation, according to Achmad Yurianto, the government spokesman for issues relating to the disease on Monday.
"Starting today, everyone has to wear face masks when going outside," Yurianto said, noting that "even asymptomatic people could be a virus spreader."
Citizens should wear washable cloth masks since surgical masks and N95 masks are for medical workers only.
The total number of deaths of Covid-19 in indonesia surpassed 200 on Monday, according to the Indonesian Government.
At a press conference, the government's spokesperson for the Covid-19-related matters Achmad Yurianto said that a total of 209 people have died of the coronavirus, and 2,491 cases have been confirmed in the country.
He added that 192 patients have recovered from the disease.
Jakarta, home to some 10 million people, suffers the highest number of deaths totaling 99, followed by West Java 29, Central Java 22, Banten 17, East Java 14, and the rest recorded in other areas.
Indonesian President Joko Widodo has declared a national public health emergency over the Covid-19 pandemic.
Authorities have been conducting rapid tests in areas where cases were detected, and ordering the public to always wear masks in a bid to contain the further spread of the coronavirus.
The government has turned the Wisma Atlet Kemayoran, the apartment towers in central Jakarta which were used to billet athletes competing in the 2018 Asian Games, into an emergency hospital intended to treat as many as 24,000 Covid-19 patients.
The government has also built a Covid-19 emergency hospital on a 16-hectare site on Galang Island, which has started operating as of Monday. - Xinhua/dpa/Asian News Network
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