Jakarta (ANTARA) - Cases of acute respiratory infection (ARI) in the capital city have decreased by 7 percent in the past two weeks, according to an official from the DKI Jakarta Health Service.

"Trend in cases of ARI, pneumonia, and influenza-like illness (ILI) in Jakarta has decreased in the last 14 days, or since September 14, 2023," head of the Surveillance, Epidemiology, and Immunization Department of the DKI Jakarta Health Service, Ngabila Salama, informed on Wednesday.

She noted that in the third week of September, the number of cases of ARI dropped by 7 percent, pneumonia by 18 percent, and ILI by 29 percent compared to the previous week.

Salama said that the decline in cases was also due to cooperation between the government and the public. The implementation of the work-from-home (WFH) policy also helped bring air pollution under control.

According to her, the central and regional governments are continuing to work together to reduce air pollution, especially particulate matter (PM) 2.5, which can be dangerous if it exceeds the threshold.

"The WFH policy has also been quite effective in quickly controlling air pollution levels, which has (helped) reduce the number of ARI and pneumonia cases," she added.

However, the regional government is still urging the public to prevent exposure to pollution in three ways. The first is avoiding unnecessary outdoor activities, especially by vulnerable groups such as babies, toddlers, pregnant women, and the elderly.

The second is wearing a KN95/KF94 mask while performing activities outdoors and completing routine immunization of children, including an additional Haemophilus influenzae immunization every year for vulnerable groups.

The community must also follow a healthy lifestyle by getting regular health checks, avoiding cigarette smoke, doing routine exercise, getting enough rest, and managing stress, Salama said.

The use of indoor air purifiers and routine intake of Vitamin C and D3 are also highly advisable, she added.

Earlier, acting head of the DKI Jakarta Health Service, Ani Ruspitawati, informed that the treatment for ARI patients is fully covered by the national health insurer (BPJS Health).

"The treatment is free of charge. BPJS Health will fully cover it, 98 percent of Jakarta residents already registered in the BPJS Health," she disclosed.

Related news: Govt presses for implementing movement to prevent air pollution impact
Related news: Ministry forms respiratory disease, air pollution control committee
Related news: Minister urges people to wear masks to prevent respiratory infections

Translator: Siti Nurhaliza, Resinta S
Editor: Azis Kurmala
Copyright © ANTARA 2023