Heru Andriyanto, Jakarta – The coronavirus daily death toll reached a new high in Indonesia on Tuesday with 302 deaths, 17 percent higher than the previous record, to take the country's total number of fatalities to 24,645, government figures show.
It's for the first time since the outbreak that the number of Covid-19 deaths has topped 300 in a single day. The previous record was 258 deaths reported on Christmas Day.
Health experts warned earlier that year-end holiday travels and gatherings could lead to a dramatic surge in newly cases and death toll and recent figures have come out with proof.
January could become deadlier than December, when the monthly death toll set a record 5,193.
There have been 2,507 Covid-19 deaths in the first 12 days of the year, or an average of 209. At this point last month, there were 1,708 deaths, according to the Jakarta Globe tally.
An additional 10,047 confirmed cases of coronavirus have been recorded in the past 24 hours, bringing the total number of cases to 846,765.
It's only for the third time since the outbreak began that the daily count has exceeded the 10,000 mark, all occurring in the last five days.
The country has added 103,567 coronavirus cases in the 12-day period. At this pace, the total number of cases will pass the 1 million mark in less than four weeks.
Another factor that the government must worry about is the rapidly growing number of active cases that pushes hospitals near their capacity.
Health Minister Budi Gunadi Sadikin on Monday appealed hospital owners to increase bed quota for Covid-19 patients to 40 percent until at least the end of the month.
The total number of active cases currently stands at a record 126,313, an increase of around 2,700 within 24 hours.
Indonesia's four most populous provinces continue to endure a dramatic surge in newly cases, with three of them averaging four digits in the last 12 days.
Jakarta is being hit badly by the virus with an average of 2,293 cases since the New Year holiday. The capital city has recorded a total of 211,252 cases, including 3,550 deaths.
West Java passed 100,000 coronavirus cases after registering 1,540 new cases in the 24-hour period. The province has added 17,000 cases since the beginning of the month. At least 1,245 people have died from coronavirus in West Java.
Central Java has been averaging 1,031 cases since Jan. 1 to take its total to 94,087. It recorded the highest daily death toll of 99 in the last 24 hours, bringing the total number of fatalities in the province to 4,161.
East Java is ranked third with a total of 94,249 confirmed cases of the virus, but its total number of Covid-19 deaths remains unrivaled, currently standing at 6,576.
The four provinces make up 59 percent of the overall cases countrywide.
Coronavirus is also spreading fast in other hotspots like South Sulawesi, East Kalimantan, Yogyakarta, Banten and Bali.
Together, they have added around 18,000 cases to the national count this month. Each of them has broken their own record for the highest daily rise at least twice in the last 12 days.
In this second group of major hotspots, South Sulawesi is leading by averaging 560 cases since Jan. 1, followed by East Kalimantan with an average of 333 cases, Yogyakarta (277), Banten (225) and Bali (187).