TEMPO.CO, Jakarta - The sudden, rapid emergence of a mysterious respiratory virus which was first reported in Wuhan, China, since the beginning of this year is fueling concerns among the global public. The virus reportedly spreads to Japan, South Korea, Thailand, and now the United States.
While there is no clear cause of the infection and how to cure it, people with the infectious illness are said to have symptoms such as difficulty breathing, flu or a bad cold, a high fever, and other respiratory problems.
The Indonesian Society of Respirology (ISR/PDPI) shares several preventive measures to avoid the transmission of the Wuhan virus, which is a coronavirus, as follows:
- Always maintain good hand hygiene, especially before touching mouth and nose, as well as in public places.
- Wash hands with clean, running water and apply soap for at least 20 seconds then rinse and dry your hands.
- Use disposable towels or tissue paper to dry your hands.
- Use hand sanitizer that contains at least 70-80 percent alcohol when you cannot use soap and water
- Make sure to close your mouth when coughing and sneezing and try to avoid anyone coughing and sneezing.
- Immediately see a doctor if you feel having respiratory symptoms and use a mask when visiting a health facility.
As for those planning to visit a country or region that are proven to be dealing with coronavirus outbreaks, PDPI calls for travelers to note these:
- Do not touch birds and other animals.
- Do not visit markets, fruit shops, farms, or live animal markets.
- Do not make direct contact with persons who are experiencing symptoms of respiratory tract infections.
- Comply with food safety instructions and hygiene rules.
- Immediately visit a local health facility using a mask if you begin to experience fever or flu.
- When you return, immediately see a doctor and wear a mask if you feel a fever or other symptoms of respiratory problems.
Even though there are no reports of Wuhan coronavirus infections in Indonesia thus far, people are appealed to stay alert given the prediction of experts that the number of sufferers possibly increases ahead of the upcoming Chinese New Year.