Tuesday, 13 April 2021 | 11:19 WIB

Indonesia Sees a Rise in B.1.1.7 Variant COVID-19 Cases

Professor Zubairi Djeorban, Head of the COVID-19 Task Force at the Indonesian Doctors Association (IDI) (special)

JAKARTA, NETRALNEWS.COM - Professor Zubairi Djeorban, Head of the COVID-19 Task Force at the Indonesian Doctors Association (IDI), says there is an increase in the number of cases of the new B.1.1.7 coronavirus variant that is found in Indonesia.

Zubairi explained that the B.1.1.7 variant will multiply more when it stays in human respiratory tracts. That is why the virus appears with more numbers.

"That is why the contagion is faster," he said on his Twitter account on Thursday (03/04/2021).

So, what is the proof that shows how fast the B.1.1.7 variant is spreading? Zubairi asked people to take a look at the United Kingdom (UK).

In the UK, the contagion is 70% quicker in the past few months. However, after the vaccination, the cases are significantly decreased. "People can check it," he said.

Furthermore, Zubairi explained that a vaccine is proven to be effective to fight against the new variant in the UK, where it uses Pfizer vaccine.

"What about Indonesia? There is no proof that SinoVac can fight against the B.1.1.7 variant. We just need to wait for the scientific proofs," he said.

According to Zubairi, it is understandable that people are worried about the B.1.1.7 variant, but he hopes that they do not panic. He is sure that people's awareness towards the health protocols is getting better in Indonesia.

"I am optimistic and have no intention to spread fear. I am telling this for everyone to be on alert. I have no intention to scare everyone," he said.

Besides that, there is a question whether the B.1.1.7 strain can be detected by PCR swab test. Zubairi said that it still can be detected.

"It can be detected by PCR swab test, but I am not sure about the other COVID-19 tests that do not have scientific proof," he added.