Monkeypox: Tankfully, no cases yet in Indonesia

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Dr. dr. I Made Gede Dwi Lingga Utama, Sp.A(K)
Dr. dr. I Made Gede Dwi Lingga Utama, Sp.A(K). (Source: SURYA HUSADHA HOSPITAL)

Jakarta, IO – After the brief rage over etiologically-unclear acute hepatitis, another disease has appeared: the monkeypox, which was found in 14 countries across the world as of the end of May 2022. It is caused by the Orthopoxvirus human monkeypox virus (MPXV) of the Poxviridae family. This highly pathogenic virus is zoonotic, signifying one spread by animals. The virus itself was first found in monkeys in 1958, while the first case in a human child was found in 1970. 

Even though no positive case of monkeypox is found in Indonesia up to now, we need to remain vigilant: the disease has exited its endemic regions of Central and Western Africa, and infected people in Israel, the US, and multiple European countries. From trade and travel, it has even reached Singapore. We need to be vigilant, as the monkeypox is now at our very gates and we need to make sure that it stays out. Let’s not repeat our tragic laxity in relation with Covid-19. 

“We really need to be very careful, because the virus might come in through tourists from its endemic continent of Africa when they come to Bali for a vacation. Our experience in mitigating the Covid – 19 pandemic by implementing masking-maintaining physical distancing-maintaining personal hygiene effort can also help prevent such viral and bacterial infections, sadly too common in tropical areas like Indonesia,” said Dr. dr. I Made Gede Dwi Lingga Utama, Sp.A(K), practicing physician in the Sanglah Central General Hospital in Denpasar, in the “What is Monkeypox?” live IG session, held by the Indonesian Pediatricians’ Association (Ikatan Dokter Anak Indonesia – “IDAI”) on Tuesday (07/06/2022).