Antara, Jakarta – GeNose C-19, a COVID-19 breathalyzer developed by the University of Gadjah Mada, needs to be installed at factories and manufacturing sites across Indonesia to support endeavors to revive the industrial sector, a minister said.
"I propose this idea to Mr. Coordinating Minister for Economy," Research and Technology Minister Bambang PS Brodjonegoro remarked at an event held to donate a GeNose C-19 set to the ministry on Monday.
The COVID-19 testing tool was handed to Brodjonegoro by Airlangga Hartarto, Coordinating Minister for Economic Affairs, who also heads Indonesia's COVID-19 Mitigation and Economic Recovery Committee.
Brodjonegoro said the presence of GeNose C-19 at factories would hopefully help revive Indonesia's industrial sector, which has been hit hard by the coronavirus pandemic.
All factory and industrial workers could be screened using GeNose C-19 before starting work in the morning and when changing shifts, suggested Brodjonegoro, who also heads the National Research and Innovation Agency (BRIN).
"The only workers allowed in the workplace must be those whose GeNose tests show negative results," he proposed, adding that this could be part of preventive efforts aimed at creating a secure and healthy work environment in factories and industries.
However, strict implementation of health protocols in the workplace will be necessary even after the GeNose C-19 has been installed, he added.
The breathalyzer has been in use since February 5 this year to screen train passengers for COVID-19.
Indonesia has been striving to win the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic since the government officially announced the country's first confirmed cases on March 2, 2020.
The government has rolled out a nationwide vaccination program this year to steam new infections. According to the Health Ministry, it would take 15 months to vaccinate around 181.5 million people under the national program.
Indonesia's COVID-19 infection rate crossed one million cases on January 26, 2021.
To attain herd immunity and free the nation from the clutches of the pandemic, which has dragged Indonesia into serious public health and economic crises, Vice President Ma'ruf Amin has stressed on the need for successfully administering the COVID-19 vaccine to the targeted population.