Bali Deputy Governor cautions against blowing up PCR test cost

Bali's Deputy Governor Tjokorda Oka Artha Ardhana Sukawati has warned facilities providing COVID-19 PCR tests against inflating their price, which has been capped by the Health Ministry at Rp275 thousand (around US$19.25) for Java and Bali regions.

"It is important for us now to ensure that all parties adhere to the new regulation and not inflate the price," heĀ  said in Denpasar, Bali, on Thursday.

Sukawati lauded the price limit reduction saying it would make PCR tests more affordable for prospective tourists. He said it would be a relief for Bali province, which is currently making efforts to revive its tourism industry from the devastating impact of the COVID-19 pandemic.

"An easier and more affordable test would be a relief for the tourism industry, and I hope this situation will continue further," he remarked.

The deputy governor expressed the hope that the testing process in laboratories would also be expedited to address residents' complaints over the long period taken to get test results. Meanwhile, the regional secretary of Bali province, Dewa Made Indra, confirmed that Bali authorities have issued a circular to regulate the COVID-19 PCR test price in the province.The circular, sent to local COVID-19 task forces and health facilities administrators, has instructed that the price of PCR tests performed by hospitals, clinics, and laboratories in Bali not exceed Rp275 thousand, in accordance with the Health Ministry's circular, he informed.

"The price limit is applied for services directed at residents requesting COVID-19 PCR testing at their own expense," Indra clarified.

The price limit does not apply to contact-tracing activities or COVID-19 cases referred to hospitals receiving PCR test assistance from the government, he added.

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