Indonesia seems to be on the brink of a COVID-19 surge with a substantial increase in daily cases this week and with more regions now given the undesirable "red zone" tag.
According to the COVID-19 Task Force, as of Sunday, there are 17 cities/regencies under the category, which signifies high risk of coronavirus transmission. Last week, 13 cities/regencies were marked red zones.
Of the 17, 12 are on Sumatra island, including Agam and Solok regencies in West Sumatra, and Siak and Kuantan Singingi regencies in Riau. The remaining red zones consist of two regencies in West Java, two in Central Java, and one in West Nusa Tenggara (NTB).
All of Jakarta's municipalities are categorized as orange zones, meaning medium risk for COVID-19 transmission.
Of all of the red zones, the surge in cases in Central Java's Kudus regency has been a cause for great national concern with hospitals filling up and hundreds of healthcare workers contracting COVID-19. Health officials say the region, which is home to many migrant workers, may have been especially adversely affected by the homecoming tradition of the Eid holiday in May.
Indonesia yesterday recorded 6,993 new cases, the largest single-day spike since late February. The country's active cases, which had been gradually dwindling down in recent weeks, went up by 1,208 to 99,663 yesterday.
Officials say the uptrend in COVID-19 cases may continue throughout June and July, precipitated in part by high mobility during the Eid holiday last month.