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Foreigners Protest Isolation in Dilapidated Quarantine Hotel, Request PCR Tests Are Not Given

A foreigner from the US has protested about the isolation hotel in Jakarta which he considered unfit.

He also complained that his request for a repeated PCR test was rejected.

The man, known as M, arrived in Indonesia with his son who is an Indonesian citizen. They both tested positive for COVID-19 but had only mild symptoms. Previously, they had taken a PCR test in the US and the results were negative.

While undergoing quarantine at a hotel in Gatot Subroto, M was transferred to a hotel in the Wahid Hasyim area, Central Jakarta because he tested positive for COVID-19. At the isolation hotel, he found the conditions unfit, even dilapidated, even though he had paid a lot of money for the hotel.

Every guest I spoke to was shocked and disappointed by the very poor condition of the hotel. The furniture had lots of stains and looked dirty. The problem was that we paid Rp13.5 million – or more, for some people – for such a dilapidated hotel. Obviously, it’s not fair,” he said.

“This hotel is in very poor condition. All guests were shocked and felt bad when they saw the condition. The carpet in the corridor is covered with visible dirt and dust. The condition in the room was worse.”

M also complained that he couldn’t go out in the sun or get fresh air, even though being in the sun may help heal COVID-19 patients. He also made his complaint via social media and it went viral.

“Most of the rooms don’t have sunlight. We are only given access to 20 minutes of sunlight per day, according to the staff,” added the man who can speak Indonesian.

Regarding bathroom matters, the quarantine hotel also had many problems. M explained that there was no hot water in his hotel room. Boiling water using an electric kettle was also not possible.

Not only that, according to M’s testimony, apart from himself, there were many other foreigners who asked for a repeated PCR test but were refused by the COVID-19 task force officers. Only those who were very persistent in demanding the extra test were accepted to get a second test.

There are even foreigners who claim to be under pressure from the authorities not to ask for a repeated PCR test.

A new PCR test will be carried out again on the 10th day of quarantine after being admitted. If they are still positive, foreigners, including him, will have to undergo isolation again. That worried M.

Responding to the foreigner’s complaint, Secretary-General of the Indonesian Hotel and Restaurant Association (PHRI), Maulana Yusran, admitted that there were indeed limitations regarding hotel isolation for those who tested positive. His party will evaluate this issue.

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