Death of PwC Indonesia Staffer Marks Possible First Big 4 Coronavirus Casualty

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Sad news out of Indonesia, as a member of the PwC family has seemingly lost his battle with coronavirus. This is the first suspected COVID-19-related death we are aware of involving an employee of a Big 4 firm.

PwC Indonesia Territory Senior Partner Irhoan Tanudiredja released a statement in which the staffer is not named; however, the firm is in the process of informing colleagues and clients with whom he had contact. In the interest of keeping commentary to a minimum, we include the statement in its entirety below:

Dear valued clients, colleagues and stakeholders,

I hope this finds you well and keeping healthy in these difficult times.

As you may have heard through various channels, we are very sad to confirm that one of our staff passed away on the afternoon of Sunday, 22 March 2020, while being treated at RS Persahabatan. We have not yet received formal confirmation of the cause of death, but given the treatment he was undergoing we feel it is necessary to inform all stakeholders of the facts and circumstances and our response:

  • The deceased’s last day in our office was Thursday, 5 March 2020, more than 2 weeks ago.
  • We have performed contact tracing for all staff and clients with whom he came into contact over the period 2 – 5 March 2020, and are in the process of informing all those identified.
  • We are not aware of any staff exhibiting similar symptoms during that period, so we are hopeful that the decision of the deceased to self-isolate has reduced the risk to others. However, this is of course not a certainty given how little is known about this virus. We are therefore advising anyone identified as having been in contact with the deceased to self isolate and seek medical advice.

Even before the sad passing of our staff member, PwC Indonesia had already implemented a number of measures aimed at protecting both our people and our clients, while continuing to do our utmost to provide service of the highest possible standard.

To reduce the risks to both our people and our clients’ people, since 2 March our staff have been encouraged to work from home wherever possible, and since 16 March, have been mandatorily working from home except where there is an urgent business need. This is in line with government recommendations, and we understand many of our clients are following a similar approach.

We will continue to serve our clients remotely. Our technology investments over recent years have enabled us to continue working almost as normal, and we are trying to ensure there is minimal disruption to our services.

Of course in unusual times like this, there are likely to be some delays and inconvenience, but it is our goal to ensure this is minimised. We note that the Indonesian Government has taken some welcome steps in delaying reporting deadlines for filing of annual accounts to the stock exchange and filing of personal tax returns. Please get in touch with me or your usual PwC contact to discuss these options further.

While we do not know how the outbreak of COVID-19 will develop over the coming weeks and months, we are working with the whole PwC network to learn the lessons from colleagues in countries which have been dealing with this challenge for some time. We are confident that we have the right policies and procedures in place to continue to serve our stakeholders to the best of our ability.

On behalf of PwC Indonesia, I want to wish you all the best of luck in working through this challenging time. Rest assured that we will always be here to support you.

Please don’t hesitate to reach out to me, your usual PwC Indonesia partner contact, or Daniel Rembeth, External Relations and Communications Director, if you need more information, or have an urgent matter we can assist you with.

As of publication time, Indonesia is reporting 686 COVID-19 cases and 55 deaths.

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