COVID-19 Nasal Swabs Reused at Indonesian Airport

COVID-19 Nasal Swabs Reused at Indonesian Airport

Indonesian police have arrested several employees of a local pharmaceutical company for allegedly reusing nasal swabs for airport Covid-19 tests.

According to CNN, five employees of Kimoa Farma, a major Indonesian pharmaceutical company, were arrested on April 27 for allegedly washing and repackaging rapid antigen nasal swab kits, and reusing them on passengers at the Kualanamu International Airport in Medan, North Sumatra.

Indonesian police claim up to 10,000 airline passengers may have been tested for coronavirus with the reused nasal swabs in a scam that netted thousands of dollars for the suspects.


Indonesia requires all travelers to provide a negative coronavirus test before they board a domestic flight, and many people use test kits sold by this company in Medan airport.

North Sumatra Police spokesman, Grand Commissioner Hadi Wahyudi, said authorities were trying to decipher the number of victims affected by the reused swabs in this scam that was going on for four months.

“They started their crime on December 17, 2020. If every day they have 50 to 100 customers, the victim’s number are estimated to be about 10,000,” Wayhudi said.