“It is essential to be careful in taking medicines. We never know what impurities (chemicals) are in them. It is also essential to always record the medicines that have been taken,” she said at a press conference at Bogor Presidential Palace, West Java, on Monday.
Such records would make it easier for the BPOM to investigate when dangerous side effects occur, she noted.
So far, the BPOM has cooperated with the Ministry of Communication and Information to track medicines which do not meet the requirements that are still being sold online, she informed.
“There are 1,400 links that we have to handle as part of the BPOM cyber patrol,” she said.
The Ministry of Health has so far identified at least 102 syrup medicine brands that were taken by patients with acute kidney injury. BPOM is still investigating the medicines to check the level of ethylene glycol (EG) and diethylene glycol (DEG) in them.
Meanwhile, BPOM has so far declared that at least five medicine brands do not meet the set requirements because they contain EG and DEG above the safe limit.
At Monday’s press conference, Health Minister Budi Gunadi Sadikin announced that 245 cases of atypical progressive acute kidney injury have been detected in 26 Indonesian provinces so far, with the fatality rate recorded at 57.6 percent.
“As of today, there are a total of 245 cases in 26 provinces. Eight provinces that have contributed 80 percent of the cases are Jakarta, West Java, Aceh, East Java, West Sumatra, Bali, Banten, and North Sumatra. The fatality rate or percentage of deaths out of the 245 cases is quite high, which is 141 or 57.6 percent,” Sadikin informed.