Denpasar, Bali (ANTARA) - Head of the Bali Health Office, Nyoman Gede Anom, has urged residents to participate in booster vaccinations to prevent the risk of developing severe symptoms upon getting infected with the XBB sub-variant of COVID-19.

"The new XBB variant has been found in Bali. The symptoms are not severe as long as you have already received the booster vaccine," he said here on Tuesday.

In the past few weeks, Bali has experienced a rise in COVID-19 cases, with the number of additional cases fluctuating daily.

"New variant (XBB) cases are almost evenly distributed across Indonesia, thus all regions have experienced a rise. In Bali, the case figure once surpassed 200, and then it dropped down to below 200 again," he informed.

Last week, on November 14, 2022, the number of additional daily cases reached 270.

Meanwhile, 137 new cases and 1 death were recorded on November 19, 105 new cases and 2 fatalities on November 20, and 74 new infections and 5 deaths on November 21.

Further, Udayana University Hospital is already equipped to detect whether a sample of patients has been infected with the XBB sub-variant.

"The cases in Bali also rose due to screening and most of them do not have symptoms or have mild symptoms," he informed.

Meanwhile, the majority of patients who died had not been vaccinated. There were also patients who had been vaccinated, but they had not received the booster dose.

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In addition, there were also patients over the age of 80 who had comorbidities.

"They came to hospitals because of kidney disorder, but as soon as they entered the hospital, they were screened and it was found that they have COVID-19," he informed.

"Thus, they were considered to have died due to COVID-19," he added.

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So far, the booster vaccination coverage in Bali has reached 82 percent, Anom informed.

"We seek to have booster vaccine to reach 100 percent immediately," he added.

He noted that there has been no problem related to vaccine availability given that Bali received a shipment of 30 thousand doses not too long ago. The doses were distributed to nine districts/cities in the province.

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Translator: Ni Luh R, Fadhli Ruhman
Editor: Fardah Assegaf
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