Oxygen prices leap in Indonesia's capital as COVID-19 cases surge

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Oxygen prices in Indonesia's capital had more than doubled and some suppliers reported shortages on Tuesday after a surge in COVID-19 cases in the country.

Singapore News, Singapore Headlines

55Yahoo News is better in the appAn employee adjusting a scarf on his face walks near oxygen cylinders at a factory amid the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak in JakartaEmergency ward of a government-run hospital is busy as the cases of COVID-19 surge in JakartaBy Yuddy Cahya Budiman and Agustinus Beo Da Costa

With hospitals filling up in the capital, Jakarta, and patients being turned away, some people sought to secure oxygen for infected family members at home. The price for a tank of oxygen had jumped to $140 from the usual $50, suppliers said. Hospitals in several designated "red zone" areas have reported overcapacity, including Jakarta, with its isolation beds 93% occupied as of Sunday.

The spread of the Delta variant has prompted concerns of a crisis in the world's fourth most populous country on the scale of that in recent months in India, where the variant was first detected."Every day we are seeing this Delta variant driving Indonesia closer to the edge of a COVID-19 catastrophe," said Jan Gelfand, head of the Indonesian delegation of the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC).

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