KUALA LUMPUR, April 18 — As of Friday, Indonesia reported 407 new cases of Covid-19, bringing the national total to 5,923 cases.
With this latest update, Indonesia has surpassed Philippines and Malaysia as the country with the highest number of people infected with the coronavirus in Southeast Asia.
This is a staggering development as the country was among the last in the Asia region to report the existence of cases among its population. Yet it now is considered the hardest hit country with the number of deaths now reaching 520. On Friday, 24 new fatalities were reported.
The Philippines currently has 5,878 cases while Malaysia has 5,251.
At 8.9 per cent and with the largest population in the region, Indonesia currently has the ninth-highest Covid-19 mortality rate in the world. The highest is currently Algeria at 15.3 per cent. Malaysia is at 1.64. The global average rate is around 4 per cent.
At a press conference on Friday by Indonesia’s Health Ministry director-general for infectious disease, Achmad Yurianto, The Jakarta Post reported him as saying “More than 173,000 people are currently classified as people under surveillance and another 12,610 as patients under treatment.”.
He emphasised that the Indonesian government would continue to carry out aggressive massive testing and contact-tracing.
Indonesia only confirmed its first coronavirus cases on March 2.