Health Ministry Urges Public to Raise Awareness Following Report of New COVID Strain

By Office of Assistant to Deputy Cabinet Secretary for State Documents & Translation     Date 22 Oktober 2022
Category: News
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Sinovac vaccine (Photo by: PR of Cabinet Secretariat/Oji)

Ministry of Health has urged the public to be vigilant and observe stricter health protocols following the announcement that the new XBB COVID strain has been detected on Indonesian soil.

According to the Ministry’s Spokesperson M. Syahril, the first confirmed case of XBB strain in Indonesia is local transmission, adding that the strain was detected in a 29-year-old woman who had just returned from Lombok in West Nusa Tenggara province.

“She showed several symptoms such as cough, fever, and cold. She got tested and tested positive for COVID-19 on September 26th. After being isolated, she reported a full recovery on October 3rd,” Syahril said, adding that ten close contacts of the patients tested negative for COVID-19.

Syahril also said that the new variant spreads more easily but not necessarily more deadly than Omicron strain.

Nevertheless, he claimed Indonesia is far from COVID-19-free since sporadic mutations will continue to happen, adding there are surges in COVID-19 case in 24 provinces during the past week.

Therefore, Syahril called on the public to adhere to health protocols such as wearing a face mask, avoiding crowd, and washing hand frequently.

The public are also advised to immediately take a test if they have any COVID-19 symptom and get their vaccine jab, he added.

“Get your booster shot as soon as possible to prevent severe illness and death from COVID-19,” he said.

Syahril also pointed out that the XBB variant has been detected in 24 countries, adding that the variant has caused a significant surge in COVID-19 case in the neighboring Singapore and increasing trend of hospital admissions in the island state due to COVID.

“The surge of XBB wave in Singapore happened very fast and reached 0.79 of that of BA.5 wave and 0.46 of BA.2 wave,” he added.

In a bid to prevent the spread, Ministry of Health, he added, has been improving supervision of the arrival of travelers at the country’s entry gates. (PR of Ministry of Health/UN) (RAS/HD/EP)

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