Ministry matters

Ministry of Health issues statement on acute hepatitis cases found in Indonesia

TEMPO.CO, Jakarta Health Minister Budi Gunadi Sadikin in a written statement on Monday urged the general public to be aware and take preventive action against the threat of acute hepatitis which has been found in several countries around the world and is believed to have entered Indonesia.

Currently, three suspected cases related to this disease have been reported and claimed the lives of three children in Indonesia.

“This virus spread through food [children]. Please always wash your hands and ensure the safety of food consumed by our children. This disease is spreading to those under 16 and much more to those under 5,” the minister warned on May 9.

Generally, the early indication of someone contracting acute hepatitis is nausea, vomiting, abdominal pain, and diarrhea, sometimes accompanied by a mild fever. This will later be followed by aggravated symptoms such as dark colored urine and pale stools.

He urges parents to take their children to health facilities for early diagnosis and help with initial treatment.

Gunadi added that currently there are 15 suspected cases of acute hepatitis. The first three cases in Indonesia were reported on April 27, 2022, days after the World Health Organization (WHO) reported the outbreak in Europe. The Ministry of Health quickly followed up on this incident by issuing a circular (SE) concerning the precautions to be taken when an acute hepatitis of unknown etiology is discovered.

The department maintains close communication with the US CDC and the UK government regarding the details of the outbreak of acute hepatitis, although unfortunately there are still conclusive explanations as to why this disease is able to occur. spread wildly.

Indonesia, in partnership with the WHO and the US government, is currently carrying out tests to find out the cause of the outbreak.

“It is most likely an adenovirus 41 strain, but there are also many cases where there is no adenovirus 41 strain,” explained Minister Gunadi.

In his written statement, the Minister of Health also mentioned the finding of foot-and-mouth disease (FMD) infecting cattle in farms in East Java, however, he noted that the disease rarely spreads to human hosts.

“We have discussed this issue with the WHO and the World Organization for Animal Health (OIE) [and concluded] that this foot-and-mouth disease is indeed the domain of animals. So almost nothing jumps out at humans,” he said.

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MUTIA YUANTISYA