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Lack of Budget, Batam Cannot Hold Mass Swab Test

Deputy Mayor of Batam Amsakar Ahmad emphasized that the Batam City Government (Pemkot) hasn't planned to conduct a mass swab test for all Batam people

Deputy Mayor of Batam, Amsakar Achmad. TRIBUN BATAM / ENDRA KAPUTRA 

Editor: Lia Sisvita Dinatri, BATAM  -  Deputy Mayor of Batam Amsakar Ahmad emphasized that the Batam City Government (Pemkot) hasn't planned to conduct a mass swab test for all Batam people. 

This is because the Batam City Government still has a minimum budget.

So, the Batam City Government is only able to get around the high spread of Covid-19 by disseminating prevention efforts and tracing close contact with patients confirmed positive for Covid-19

He said, what the Batam Covid-19 Handling Acceleration Task Force Team was doing, such as focusing on social safety nets and tracing, was still maximal.

He admitted, early detection of Covid-19 cases for people without symptoms is important, however, because there is no budget, this cannot be implemented by the Batam City Government. 

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"The bulk swab test requires a lot of tools, such as a swab tool to collect mucus samples and a sample storage tube. Of course, this requires a large amount of money. Moreover, the total population of Batam is 1.3 million people. It can be estimated how much it will cost if the residents of Batam take swabs one by one," said Amsakar. 

Residents can do the swab test independently, which costs Rp. 1.8 million per test

"If people can afford it, there is nothing wrong with doing the swab test independently, which costs around Rp. 1.8 million per test," said Amsakar.

Furthermore, Amsakar said, until now, every day the number of samples entering BTKLPP Batam has reached more than 100 samples.

This swab test is a follow-up to close contact tracing using the first rapid test conducted by the task force team.

"So, to maximize tracing, the Task Force team first conducted a Rapid Test, after that carried out a swab for the reactive ones," concluded Amsakar. (*)

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Penulis: Lia Sisvita Dinatri
Editor: Lia Sisvita Dinatri
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