The distribution of the face masks was aimed to serve as a reminder to residents of the need to continue wearing masks in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic, Papua Health Office's secretary, Ary Pongtiku, said.
With the COVID-19 caseload in provincial capital Jayapura reaching 10,477 as of Tuesday, health officials will also distribute leaflets containing information on staying healthy as part of a public awareness campaign.
To tackle coronavirus spread in the province, Papua Governor Lukas Enembe has launched a campaign with the tagline: "I take care of you; You take care of me; We take care of Papua".
Given the relatively high infection rate in the province, the Indonesian government has included Papua in the list of 10 prioritized provinces in its battle against the coronavirus disease.
The nine other provinces are Aceh, North Sumatra, Jakarta, West Java, Central Java, East Java, Bali, South Kalimantan, and South Sulawesi.
Indonesia's Health Ministry has collaborated with the COVID-19 task force to launch a program to bolster contact-tracing efforts in government-prioritized 51 districts and cities across 10 provinces, as part of COVID-19 prevention and mitigation efforts.
COVID-19 initially struck the Chinese city of Wuhan at the end of 2019 and thereafter spread across the world, including to countries in the Asia-Pacific region.
The Indonesian government made an official announcement regarding the country's first confirmed cases on March 2 this year.
The Indonesian government has consistently expressed confidence in the potential of COVID-19 vaccines to help it win the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic, which has posed a serious threat to public health and the economy.
Over the past few months, the government has made all-out efforts to secure potential COVID-19 vaccines for Indonesians through bilateral and multilateral cooperation.
The government is also supporting research efforts towards developing the country's own COVID-19 vaccine, Merah Putih (Red and White), named after the colors of the national flag.
Besides, Indonesia is cooperating with China and the United Kingdom for the procurement and supply of COVID-19 vaccine candidates.
It secured access to COVID-19 vaccines from China during a meeting between the Indonesian delegation and representatives of Cansino, G42, Sinopharm, and Sinovac in China on October 10 this year. (INE)
Related news: Papua's COVID-19 death toll reaches 103: task force
Related news: COVID-19 pandemic remains persistent, glaring challenge for Papua
EDITED BY INE