The Indonesian Public Works and Housing Ministry rushed to convert four apartment towers of Wisma Atlet Kemayoran, an athletes village in Central Jakarta, into a hospital to treat as many as 22,000 COVID-19 patients.
The 7-tower Wisma Atlet Kemayoran was originally built for the 2018 Asian Games, which Jakarta co-hosted with Palembang, South Sumatra.
Government spokesperson for COVID-19-related matters, Achmad Yurianto, said on 18 March 2020 that the emergency hospital could be used for rapid testing.
Public Works and Housing Minister Basuki Hadimoeljono said on 22 March 2020 that construction work on the apartments had been completed and that the COVID-19 hospital would be operational by 23 March 2020.
"One-hundred percent [of the work] has been completed, all that's left is the installation of equipment, which will be organized this afternoon," Basuki said at a press conference on 22 March 2020. "Tonight is the dress rehearsal, tomorrow we will start operations."
State-Owned Enterprises (SOEs) Minister Erick Thohir, who was also at the press conference, said that SOEs would supply the hospital with equipment and a telecommunications network. The renovation involves seven total state construction firms.
“I am sure that if we are united, Insya Allah [God willing], we can get through anything well. I sincerely appreciate all those who have moved quickly to help the government to form this emergency hospital," Erick said.
Some 700 construction workers were deployed to convert the buildings, and, on 21 March 2020, the complex was sprayed with disinfectants by the Central Jakarta Red Cross.
With the rush of people checking for COVID-19, government hospitals in Jakarta are running out of wards, and with the number of confirmed patients expected to grow in the coming days, the government is expanding its infrastructure and facilities.
For more on this story, go to The Jakarta Post.