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Posts tagged ‘Indonesia’

Indonesia stepping up measures to prevent MERS

File photo illustration: Indonesian Muslim piligrims sit on the pavement in the holy city of Mecca after the evening prayers. (AFP/ Fayez Nureldine)

Indonesia is stepping up measures to prevent the deadly MERS virus from entering the country. Thermal scanners have been activated in 13 international airports and pilgrims returning from the Middle East must undergo health checks.

JAKARTA: Amid reports of more potential infections, Indonesia is stepping up measures to prevent the deadly MERS-CoV virus from entering the country.

Thermal scanners have been activated in 13 international airports across the country and pilgrims returning home from the Middle East must undergo health checks.

Pilgrims returning home from umrah must fill in a health alert card before they are inspected on arrival.

Four people in Saudi Arabia have died in recent days after contracting the virus, which is believed to originate in camels and has no vaccine.

Professor Dr Agus Purwadianto, acting director general of Disease Control and Public Health, said: “Those who are at high risk of MERS-CoV will pass through a thermal body scanner, and if there are indications of the disease, then they must pass through a body cleanser, which is an automated machine that cleanses bodies of germs.”

Since January, a total of 47 suspected MERS-CoV cases have been detected in Indonesia, across 13 provinces.

Test results in 36 cases have returned negative, while 11 others are still being examined.

While so far no patient has returned a positive reading, health authorities especially in hospitals where past cases of bird flu were treated, are not taking chances and are on stand-by.

On Wednesday, a 55-year-old man in Denpasar, Bali, died in hospital, but health authorities said his test results came back negative for the deadly virus.

There is growing concern more cases will appear, as the number of umrah pilgrims usually increase by 150,000 each month ahead of the holy month of Ramadan, beginning the end of June.

via Indonesia stepping up measures to prevent MERS – Channel NewsAsia.

Dozens injured, one dead as quake hits Indonesia’s Aceh

Graphic map locating the epicentre of a 6.1-magnitude quake that struck the Indonesian island of Sumatra on Tuesday. (AFP)

A 6.1-magnitude earthquake which hit the Indonesian province of Aceh on Tuesday killed at least one person, injured dozens and destroyed buildings, sparking panic in a region devastated by the quake-triggered tsunami of 2004.

LAMPAHAN, Indonesia – A 6.1-magnitude earthquake which hit the Indonesian province of Aceh on Tuesday killed at least one person, injured dozens and destroyed buildings, sparking panic in a region devastated by the quake-triggered tsunami of 2004.

The quake struck inland at 0737 GMT at a depth of just 10 kilometres (6.2 miles) in the mountainous Bener Meriah district in the heart of Aceh, the US Geological Survey said.

Houses collapsed in the district, some 320 kilometres (200 miles) from the provincial capital Banda Aceh.

“A child died when a wall collapsed,” Ema Suryani, a doctor at a health clinic in Lampahan city, told AFP.

“We have received around 50 people with injuries suffered when the walls of their houses collapsed,” added the doctor.

“The injuries vary from open wounds to broken bones.”

Injured people had been transported from several affected villages in two trucks, she said.

People ran outside in panic in Banda Aceh as the quake shook houses for around one minute, an AFP journalist at the scene said.

Aceh, on the northern tip of Sumatra island, is regularly hit by quakes. In 2004 a massive tremor sparked a tsunami that killed 170,000 people in the province and tens of thousands more in countries around the Indian Ocean.

In April last year an 8.6-magnitude quake struck 431 kilometres off Banda Aceh, prompting an Indian Ocean-wide tsunami alert.

Five people died and seven were injured in Aceh in the quake and following aftershocks.

Indonesia sits on the Pacific “Ring of Fire” where tectonic plates collide, causing frequent seismic and volcanic activity.

– AFP/ir

via Dozens injured, one dead as quake hits Indonesia’s Aceh – Channel NewsAsia.

Sime to expand healthcare biz in Indonesia

KUALA LUMPUR: Sime Darby Bhd plans to expand its healthcare business in Indonesia in synch with its five-year strategic plan to grow the business in Malaysia and the Asean region.

Its chief executive officer Datuk Mohd Bakke Salleh said the group was currently focusing on Jakarta and had been discussing with a few players in the Indonesian market with regards to its plan.

“We are looking at a few countries in the Asean region to add on hospitals or to take up equity stake in existing hospitals. We want to add on more hospitals by 2016 as stated in our five-year strategic blueprint that we rolled out last year.”

For their plan in Jakarta, he said the group was open to both options.

“For the time being, it is difficult to commit anything, because it’s work in progress,” he told a press conference here after the official opening of Sime Darby Medical Centre Ara Damansara, here today.

The medical centre was opened by the Sultan of Selangor Sultan Sharafuddin Idris Shah Alhaj.

“It is important to have a significant stake and at the same time to be an active partner. A significant stake does not necessarily link to having more than 50 per cent. It could be less than that and when it comes to day-to-day management, we have an active role and it must be based on other criteria as well,” Mohd Bakke said.

On the group’s five-year strategic blueprint, he said it was progressing well.

“So far so good, in terms of our strategic blueprint milestone. We said that we would have additional two hospitals operating next year, today we have one and early next year we have another one,” he said.

The group’s other hospitals are Sime Darby Medical Centre Subang Jaya and Sime Darby Specialist Centre Megah. Sime Darby Medical Centre Parkcity will be opened next year.

Mohd Bakke said Sime Darby was now actively looking for opportunities in other parts of the Klang Valley as well as other locations in Malaysia for its next hospital.

He also said that the newly launched Sime Darby Medical Centre Ara Damansara, which was opened in January this year, currently has 73 beds and the number would be scaled up to 220 beds by 2016.

According to him, the healthcare business in Selangor was growing fast and the demand from local patients very good.

He said the Sime Darby Medical Centre Ara Damansara was not targetting foreign patients currently but expected the number of its international patients to increase to about 20 per cent from the present five per cent over the next four years.

Built at a cost of RM240 million, the country’s first stand-alone medical centre which focuses on heart, brain, spine and joints cases will eventually have 220 beds, 30 clinic suites, five operating theatres and two cardiovascular laboratories.

It will also have a fully-equipped, rehabilitation facility which
includes neuro-spinal rehabilitation (stroke and spinal injuries), paediatric therapy, musculoskeletal rehabilitation, occupational therapy, hydrotherapy and speech therapy.

Mohd Bakke said the cost would increase from the RM240 million to RM300 million when the number of its hospital beds increases to 220 from the present 73 beds.

He also said that Sime Darby sees higher contribution from its
healthcare division to the group’s profit with the opening of the new hospital.

Mohd Bakke also said that Sime Darby does not have any plan to list its healthcare unit for the time being.

Read More: BusinessTimes

Indonesia goes on alert after bird flu kills man

JAKARTA, Indonesia — Indonesia confirmed yesterday that a bird-flu virus killed a 23-year-old pigeon fancier Saturday in Jakarta, prompting the government to step up preventive measures at hospitals.

Three hospitals dedicated to handling the H5N1 strain of avian influenza in the city of 9.6 m illion people were ordered to provide stand-by rooms for suspected patients, Dien Emmawati, head of Jakarta’s Health Agency, said by phone yesterday. More ambulances for bird-flu patients will also be added, she said.

The virus has killed more than 80 percent of people infected in the country since it was first reported in 2005, health-ministry data show. The strain was first recorded in humans in Hong Kong in 1997 and has since spread through Asia, Europe and Africa, resulting in the deaths of tens of millions of birds and raising concerns of a global outbreak.

“I hope people realize the danger of bird flu is still lurking in Jakarta,” Emmawati said.

Avian flu has the potential to cause a deadly pandemic, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says. Since 2003, more than 500 people have been infected with the H5N1 strain worldwide and about 60 percent have died, according to the Atlanta-based agency.

The latest victim had been complaining of a high fever since Dec. 31, after having come into contact with a dead pigeon. He was admitted to a general ward on Jan. 3, before being transferred four days later when his condition deteriorated.

He was not isolated at any point, Emmawati said.

A laboratory test was positive for the H5N1 virus.

The city’s health agency destroyed the victim’s three remaining pigeons, burned their carcasses and tested other poultry in the area.

The agency has tested 11 people related to the man, and the results were negative, Emmawati said. The authority will keep monitoring the family and the area where they live for the next two weeks, she said.

The latest death takes the toll to 151 deaths out of 183 people infected in Indonesia. The three provinces with the highest number of bird-flu cases are Jakarta, West Java and Banten, the ministry said.

The Columbus Dispatch

Indonesia takes steps to anticipate H5N1

JAKARTA: The Indonesian government has been on alert on the possible spread of bird flu viruses (H5N1) following a global concern that the virus may mutate to a certain form that can spread among human, reports Xinhua news agency.

On Jan 3, a 23-year-old Indonesian man suspected of having avian influenza died in a hospital here following the death of one of his pigeon a week before.

Indonesian Agriculture Minister Suswono Arsyaf said that his ministry had received informal information from the international organisations that the viruses would later show an indication that they could mutate to a certain form that make it enable to spread among humans.

“This is a warning. The concern over possible human-to-human spread has appeared. I have received such information informally,” said Suswono.

Despite there being no any mass bird-flu case on poultry or cattle, the minister had ordered to impose a precaution measure.

“We keep monitoring the viruses as part of our alertness on bird flu. I have ordered officials to persistently conduct surveillance. And we ask people don’t be reluctant to report any animal or poultry sudden death or the person himself or herself being sick,” he said at the State Palace.

Indonesia had been hit the hardest by bird flu years ago with more than 100 fatalities but then the spread of the viruses has been slow.

Deputy Health Minister Ali Gufron said that the government had set up task force teams to face the threat and hospitals had been prepared.

“We anticipate by preventing the virus from spreading to human or other places. Teams have been set up that can operate more effectively and efficient,” he said.

The Star

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