Acute hepatitis cases must invite concern: epidemiologist

Acute hepatitis cases must invite concern: epidemiologist

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Purwokerto, C Java (ANTARA) – The discovery of acute hepatitis infections, whose causes have not been determined yet, must become a cause for concern for all parties, field epidemiologist from Jendral Soedirman University (Unsoed), Dr. Yudhi Wibowo, has stressed.

“All parties need to be alert, especially regional governments,” he said here on Tuesday.

Increasing vigilance and surveillance against mysterious hepatitis, especially in children under 16 years, is necessary, he added.

Regional governments need to make efforts to simultaneously and massively disseminate information and educate people about the disease in their respective areas, he said.

“Therefore, the community would be able to participate in preventive measures actively, for example, by implementing a healthy lifestyle, not sharing utensils, eating cooked and hygienic food, avoiding contact with sick people, washing hands routinely, and other anticipatory measures,” he expounded.

In addition, people must also maintain cleanliness in their homes and surrounding environments.

“People can also take other measures, such as reducing mobility, wearing masks when traveling, keeping a safe distance from other people, and avoiding crowds,” he added.

Wibowo said that the same method as the one implemented for COVID-19 information dissemination could be used to educate the community.

“Currently, the government has experience in carrying out COVID-19 information dissemination, and it has proven effective. The (same) method can be used to disseminate information related to acute hepatitis,” he added.

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He also said that regional governments must make testing and tracing efforts to prevent the spread of acute hepatitis.

“For testing, indeed, it cannot be carried out specifically because there is not enough evidence regarding the exact cause; it is still under research,” the epidemiologist noted.

Earlier, the Ministry of Health had increased vigilance against a mysterious form of acute hepatitis that is affecting children in several countries.

The ministry sent a letter of vigilance to the provincial, district, and city health offices, namely Circular Letter Number HK.02.02/C/2515/2022, concerning precautions for the discovery of acute hepatitis cases of unknown etiology. 

Related news: State prepared to tackle hepatitis, no need for panic: Governor Kamil




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