Jakarta (ANTARA) - Indonesia's Health Ministry has urged its officers to be vigilant against pneumonia cases following a report from the World Health Organization (WHO) about an increase in mysterious pneumonia cases attacking children in China.

As a form of government preparation in anticipating the spread of pneumonia in Indonesia, the ministry issued a circular concerning precautions against mycoplasma pneumonia in Indonesia.

"The circular aims to anticipate the spread of pneumonia in Indonesia," said Maxi Rein Rondonuwu, the ministry's Director General of Disease Prevention and Control, in a statement on Wednesday.

The circular also urged port health offices (KKPs) to monitor the development of cases and affected countries at the global level and increase early vigilance by monitoring cases suspected of pneumonia.

Rondonuwu emphasized the need for the KKPs to also step up supervision of crew, personnel, and passengers as well as transportation equipment, luggage, the environment, and disease-carrying animals at ports, airports, and cross-border posts, especially those from infected countries.

"The KKPs and health service facilities in the regions must carry out strict surveillance by monitoring the increase in cases in the region," he stated.

Rondonuwu then reminded the KKPs and health facilities to report case findings through the Early Awareness and Response System (SKDR) at https://skdr.surveilans.org, or the Public Health Emergency Operation Center via WhatsApp to 0877-7759-1097 or via email to poskoklb@yahoo.com with a copy to provincial health services and district/city health services.

Meanwhile, local health services can follow up on reports of suspected cases of mycoplasma pneumoniae from health facilities and facilitate the delivery of specimens to the Sentinel Influenza Like Illness (ILI) or Severe Acute Respiratory Infection (SARI) reference laboratory.

He also called on all parties to intensify health promotion efforts, such as dissemination of health education to increase public knowledge regarding pneumonia.

The exact cause of the disease that attacks the respiratory system is not yet known. However, based on epidemiological reports, there has been an increase in mycoplasma pneumonia cases by 40 percent.

Mycoplasma was a common cause of respiratory infections before COVID-19.

Related news: Health Ministry raises vigilance against risk of pneumonia outbreak
Related news: Do not underestimate the impact of air pollution: Health Ministry

Translator: Sean Muhamad, Resinta Sulistiyandari
Editor: Anton Santoso
Copyright © ANTARA 2023