Indonesia installs Covid-19 mobile labs at border checkpoints hinh anh 1Indonesian crew workers from the Viking Orion cruise ship arrive at Tanjung Priok Port in Jakarta on May 11. (Photo: Antara)

Hanoi (VNA)
– Indonesia’s National Disaster Management Agency (BNPB) is setting up mobile laboratories at airports, seaports and border checkpoints around the country to test arrivals for COVID-19. 

BNPB Secretary Harmensyah said on May 12 that Indonesian citizens stuck overseas, most of them migrant workers, are still being repatriated and the government is worried they might be bringing the coronavirus with them. 

Polymerase chain reaction (PCR) testing is still the most reliable method to detect COVID-19 cases and labs to perform the test should be available at every entry point to Indonesia. 

The BPPT (Technology Assessment and Application Agency) has developed a mobile BSL2 (biosafety level-2) laboratory capable of performing 262 PCR tests in 24 hours. The agency is working with teams from Gajah Mada University, Airlangga University and Hepatika Mataram to reach 10,000 tests per day. 

When test results come back negative, the returning citizens will be put in quarantine at dormitories or hotels.

If the results came back positive, the Covid-19 Task Force will send the patients to government quarantine facilities at the converted Athletes' Village in Jakarta or on Galang Island in Riau.

About 90,000 Indonesian migrant workers had already returned to the country since the coronavirus outbreak from several countries. Tens of thousands of other Indonesian citizens are to return from overseas, most of them cruise ship crew members, students and religious pilgrims, in May or June.

In another development, Indonesian Minister of Defence Prabowo Subianto has held talks with Chinese State Councilor and Defence Minister Wei Fenghe who said China will firmly support Indonesia’s efforts to fight against the epidemic.

Prabowo in return expressed his gratitude to the Chinese armed forces for its support and assistance, and said that Indonesia spoke highly of China's achievements in combating the virus and its contributions to global cooperation in the battle./.