Jakarta (ANTARA) - The provincial government of DKI Jakarta has stressed the use of masks and vaccinations for vulnerable groups to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

"Wear a mask and take part in vaccinations for vulnerable groups," head of epidemiological surveillance and immunization at the DKI Jakarta Health Service, Ngabila Salama, said here on Monday.

Salama urged people to be more strict about wearing masks, washing their hands diligently, maintaining good room ventilation, and avoiding cigarette smoke.

The provincial government also appealed to vulnerable people to complete the COVID-19 vaccination because, if they test positive for COVID-19, they will be at greater risk of severe infection and even death.

"People over 50 who have not completed the vaccination, as well as those with concurrent hypertension, diabetes, stroke, heart disease, chronic kidney disease, cancer, tuberculosis, HIV, and other immunological disorders, must ensure complete immunization," Salama said.

The provincial government is offering 15 different types of regular children's vaccines as well as one to four rounds of COVID-19 vaccinations free of cost.

During business hours, the COVID-19 immunization will be available at the DKI Jakarta District Health Center.

The vaccination will also be provided at other locations such as city-owned Tarakan General Hospital (RSUD Tarakan), Monday to Saturday, 8 a.m. to 12 noon local time; PPKP Clinic, Monday to Friday, 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. local time; and Tanjung Priok Port Health Clinic, Monday to Friday, 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. local time.

The provincial government will also provide free antigen and PCR (polymerase chain reaction) services across community health centers (Puskesmas) for persons with symptoms or close contacts of COVID-19 patients.

The DKI Jakarta Health Office recorded 271 confirmed COVID-19 cases from December 4–10, 2023. The figure was much higher compared to the period from November 27 to December 3, when 80 cases were reported.

The wave of COVID-19 cases tends to increase every six months due to seasonal shifts that affect people's immunity.

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Translator: Siti, Alita, Azis Kurmala
Editor: Rahmad Nasution
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