July 14, 2021, 06.44 PM
Illustration of Covid-19 patients funeral. KOMPAS.COM/SUKOCOIllustration of Covid-19 patients funeral.

JAKARTA, KOMPAS.com - Indonesia has surpassed India as the new epicenter of the Covid-19 pandemic in Asia, with daily infections exceeding 40,000 for two consecutive days.

The Southeast Asia country reported 47,899 new cases on Tuesday, July 13, or up 18.48 percent from 40,427 cases in the latest 24-hour period. In India, however, the number of new cases fell to 32,906 cases from 37,154 cases. 

Of the 270 million population, which is only a fifth of India, Indonesia recorded around 132 cases per one million people, while India recorded only 26 cases. Furthermore, these figures do not take into account Indonesia's poor testing and tracing record.

Also readIndonesia Receives Foreign Aid to Fight Covid-19 Surge

Indonesia's case positivity rate, which refers to the percentage of confirmed infections with people tested, has hovered around 30 percent over the past week. While in India, the figure has only reached two percent.

Cumulatively, India's tally of confirmed Covid-19 cases is still the highest in Asia with 30.9 million cases and 410,784 deaths as of Tuesday, followed by Indonesia with 2,615,529 cases and 68,219 deaths.

Even so, the number of cases in India has continued to fall from its peak in May, while the outbreak in Indonesia has not shown any signs of slowing down since the start of the pandemic.

Indonesia's Health Minister Budi Gunadi Sadikin said that the bed occupancy rate (BOR) for Covid-19 patients in 12 provinces had exceeded 70 percent. Half of them are in Java and the rest are on other Indonesian islands.

Also readIndonesia Seeks More Oxygen for Covid-19 Patients amid Surge in Delta Variant Cases

In the capital city Jakarta, the BOR is close to 90 percent, although some facilities have recently been converted into special hospitals for Covid-19 patients.

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