August 9, 2020, 11.03 PM
Medical workers in personal protective equipment (PPE) KOMPAS.com/NURWAHIDAHMedical workers in personal protective equipment (PPE)

JAKARTA, KOMPAS.com – Twenty-two health workers will be awarded posthumously the government's Star of Service medals for their contribution to Indonesia's fight against the scourge of Covid-19.

Senior Coordinating Minister for Political, Legal and Security Affairs Mahfuf MD announced the medical personnel will be awarded the Bintang Jasa [Star of Service] medals on August 13, days before Indonesia celebrates its 75th Independence Day on August 17. Their families will receive the decorations on their behalf.

“Nine of the medical workers will be given the Bintang Jasa Pratama [Star of Service 2nd Class], while 13 of them will be awarded the Bintang Jasa Naryana [3rd Class] medals,” he said in an online press conference August 8.

Also read: Only Indonesia's Central Goverment Has Authority to Designate Covid-19 Safe Zones

“The government will decorate [the health workers] as a token of gratitude for their sacrifice and compensate their families. Anyone who thinks they died to obtain fame and fortune should think otherwise as no amount of acknowledgement or compensation can bring them back.”

Mahfud acknowledged the strains that they have gone through in tackling Covid-19.

"Many doctors died [combating coronavirus] because of stress and exhaustion. Their condition makes them vulnerable to Covid-19, and eventually they succumb to the illness."

He added that the decorations will be the first to be granted for health workers who died performing their duty.

“We are still awaiting the full report on medical personnel who died trying to contain [Covid-19]. Once that is done, we can give them the proper decorations and compensation,” he said.

"We already set a compensation rate, starting with doctors. Specialists will receive Rp. 15 million, while general practitioners will receive Rp. 10 million in compensation."

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