Covid-19 May Infect Young Adults Without Symptoms: Gov’t Spokesperson
Date 22 Maret 2020
Global data shows that younger adults have higher body immunity compared to that of the elderly but younger adults are ‘not susceptible’ to the virus, the Government’s spokesperson for covid-19 matters Achmad Yurianto has said.
“This is why young people play a pivotal role on the rapid spreading of the virus because they mostly show no symptom which make them feel healthy and thus, they do not do self-quarantine themselves,” Yuri said.
According to Yuri, if the infected people spread the virus to the elderly and those who are vulnerable, this will become a serious matter to the family, adding that everyone should be aware that they can become the carrier of the virus; thus they must start practicing social distancing.
Yuri added that the Government is currently leaving no stone unturned to control the spread of the virus and has even started to run a rapid test.
“The rapid test started yesterday in a number of districts in South Jakarta. We will run the test nationwide for everyone, particularly on people with a higher risk of getting infected,” Yuri said, adding that the rapid test will be synchronized with the data of covid-19 patients, such as their family, office, and other locations that they have been contacted prior to the infection.
The purpose of the rapid test, Yuri added, is to find the infected persons as soon as possible before they start to infect others.
An infected person, he continued, could get a so-called “false negative” test result if the swab missed the virus.
“This often happens to people who get infected in less than 6 or 7 days. Thus, the test will be repeated after 6 or 7 days later with similar swab test,” he said, while adding that anyone who test negative still needs to do self-quarantine for several more days.
“This is what people should understand. Negative test result does not guarantee someone is not infected,” he said.
“In the meantime, people who test positive do not necessarily have to be hospitalized. They may isolate themselves at a certain location unless they have pre-existing medical conditions,” Yuri added.
Yuri went on to say that the Government has started to purchase medicine medically proven to give positive result to the patients that had also been used by other countries.
One of the medicine is called chloroquine, which commonly used to treat malaria disease. The medicine is used to treat the disease, not to prevent, so the public should not purchase it by themselves without medical prescription.
“The people should not panic buying the medicine since the medicine needs medical prescription and must be used under the supervision of health professionals,” Yuri explained.
To date, Yuri added the best strategy to prevent the spread of the virus is to stay at home, to avoid meeting, and to practice social distancing, as well as to get information from trusted and reliable source, such as covid-19 call center on 119 ext 9 or various online application services such as GoJek, Halodoc, Sehatpedia, and others.
“The Government has prepared numerous channels for the public to get the latest information on covid-19,” Yuri said, adding that the Government has also provided additional beds in hospitals to treat more covid-19 patients and transformed apartment for athletes in Kemayoran, Jakarta, into a temporary hospital.
The private sectors, he continued, are also committed to providing their facilities, such as hotel rooms that are transformed into isolation rooms for covid-19 patients.
“The public should trust the Government in handling this crisis. The Government puts the public’s health as top priority. Ministry of Health has also provided 12 million surgical masks and 81 thousands N95 facemasks for health workers,” Yuri said.
“For hospitals, health clinics, and the community who need the masks, please submit a request to the provincial health agency. The Government guarantees the availability of face masks,” Yuri said. (UN/EN)
Translated by: Estu Widyamurti
Reviewed by: M. Ersan Pamungkas