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Jakarta Post

Five percent of Indonesia's COVID-19 cases are children: Ministry

  • Ivany Atina Arbi
    Ivany Atina Arbi

    The Jakarta Post

Jakarta   /   Fri, May 29, 2020   /   07:13 am
Five percent of Indonesia's COVID-19 cases are children: Ministry A woman carries her baby while shopping at a Kebon Roek Market in Mataram, West Nusa Tenggara, on Thursday. West Nusa Tenggara Health Agency data show that, as of Tuesday, 86 children in the province have contracted COVID-19, comprising 35 toddlers under the age of 5 and 51 children aged 6 to 18. (Antara/Ahmad Subaidi)

According to the Women's Empowerment and Child Protection Ministry, around 5 percent of all people found to be COVID-19-positive in Indonesia are children below 17 years of age.

"Normally, children's immunity is lower than that of adults," said the ministry's deputy assistant for child protection in emergency situations and pornography, Ciput Eka Purwianti, on Thursday.

According to the ministry's preliminary analysis, many children are infected with the virus due to the lack of a clean and healthy lifestyle, indicators of which include frequently washing hands with clean water and soap, eating fruits and vegetables in sufficient amounts and doing physical activities on a daily basis.

The ministry was therefore devising a protocol for implementing the so-called new normal at schools to prevent the further spread of the coronavirus among children, Ciput said.

Read also: 22-month old baby in N. Sulawesi may be Indonesia’s youngest COVID-19 related death

As of Thursday afternoon, Indonesia has recorded 24,538 COVID-19 cases nationwide, 1,496 of which have turned fatal. Based on the ministry's statement, that would mean roughly 1,200 children are infected with SARS-CoV-2 in the country.

The Indonesian Pediatricians Association (IDAI) previously revealed that at least 584 children in Indonesia had tested positive for COVID-19, 14 of whom had died of the disease.

Meanwhile, up to 3,324 children have been classified under the PDP status, which refers to people with COVID-19 symptoms who have not been confirmed as having the illness. As many as 129 of them have died.

"We retrieved the data on May 18," IDAI chairman Aman Bhakti Pulungan told last week.