Omicron: First case of local transmission reported in Indonesia

JAKARTA: The first locally transmitted Omicron case was reported in Jakarta on Tuesday, prompting the government to step up its surveillance of the new Covid-19 variant.

"This patient is a 37-year-old male with no recent history of overseas travel or contact with international visitors," said Siti Nadia Tarmizi, a spokesperson for the Ministry of Health's Covid-19 vaccine programme, in an online press conference.

The patient arrived in Jakarta on December 6 from Medan in North Sumatra province, and he and his wife went to a mall in Jakarta's Sudirman Central Business District on the same day. He was infected with coronavirus after an antigen test at a hospital before travelling back to Medan, and on December 26, the results of a laboratory test proved that he was infected with the Omicron strain, whereas his wife was negative for the virus.

Authorities are currently tracing the patient's close friends and conducting swab tests on visitors to the mall and hospital, as well as the patient's flat in North Jakarta. With the addition of this additional patient, the total number of Covid-19 Omicron variant cases has risen to 47, including 45 international travellers and a quarantine centre worker.

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