JAKARTA, KOMPAS.com – Indonesia is keeping a close eye on a new variant of Covid-19, AY.4.2 or known as delta plus, even though Health Minister Budi Gunadi Sadikin said that the delta subvariant has not been detected in the country.
The newly-discovered variant has already been found in some countries, including the UK, Russia, the US, and the neighboring country Malaysia.
“The AY.4.2 variant has already been detected in Malaysia, but it has not been found in Indonesia until now,” Budi told a virtual press conference via the Presidential Secretariat’s YouTube channel on Monday, November 11.
He said that the ministry has been conducting whole genome sequencing from 1,500 to 1,800 tests per month. However, until now the AY.4.2 variant has not been detected.
The government continues to monitor the borders and entry points, especially many Indonesians travel to and from Malaysia by land, sea, and air. “We will tighten our surveillance to prevent the new variant from entering Indonesia,” Budi added.
Meanwhile, Coordinating Minister for Maritime Affairs and Investment Luhut Binsar Pandjaitan said this new variant of Covid-19 is 15 percent more virulent than the highly contagious delta variant. Therefore, he called on the people to remain vigilant in daily activities.
The government will adjust its policy in a bid to anticipate the potential transmission of the delta plus variant, which has been found in Malaysia.
It was reported that the government is currently watching closely on the development of the AY.4.2 variant, which caused a spike in coronavirus cases in the UK from July to October this year.
(Writer: Dian Erika Nugraheny | Editors: Dani Prabowo, Kristian Erdianto)
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