Jakarta (ANTARA) - Internist and consultant on tropical and infectious diseases from the state-run Dr. Cipto Mangunkusumo Hospital (RSCM), Dr. Robert Sinto SpPD, K-PTI, revealed that the government is prioritizing the provision of monkeypox (Mpox) vaccines to vulnerable groups.

"The government is currently preparing a priority scale for groups that will get access to the monkeypox vaccine," he said at an online talk show with the Jakarta Health Service on Thursday.

The priority scale aims to ensure that the limited number of vaccines can be used optimally for people who are in need, he said.

Access to the monkeypox vaccines will not be as easy as for the COVID-19 vaccine, which was given to all levels of society without a priority scale, he added.

The decision to limit access to the monkeypox vaccine was taken because there are still many ways that people can prevent contracting monkeypox besides getting vaccinated.

"We can also prevent infection without being given a vaccine. There are many steps that we can take," according to him.

One of the prevention measures is practicing clean and healthy living behavior and avoiding close contact and sexual relations with monkeypox sufferers, he added.

"We should carry out such preventive measures even if the government does not provide the vaccines," he continued.

Earlier, the Indonesian Health Ministry reported the discovery of a fresh monkeypox case in Jakarta on October 14, 2023.

The patient was confirmed to have been exposed to monkeypox after a series of examinations. The patient lives in Jakarta and has no history of travel abroad or out of town.

With the discovery of the new case, the number of cases of monkeypox detected in Indonesia has reached 2. The first case was discovered on August 20, 2022.

According to the World Health Organization (WHO), monkeypox is an infectious disease caused by the monkeypox virus. It can cause a painful rash, enlarged lymph nodes, and fever.

In general, the number of confirmed cases of monkeypox worldwide has reached 90,618, with a total of 517 deaths reported from 115 countries.

The United States is the country that has reported the highest number of cases, while China, Thailand, and Japan have dominated in terms of the cases reported in Asia.

Related news: Monkeypox case in Jakarta comes from local transmission: Ministry

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Translator: Nabil Ihsan, Resinta Sulistiyandari
Editor: Tia Mutiasari
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