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Indonesia records over 5,000 people infected with Singapore flu, govt urges public to maintain immunity

Tempo - March 31, 2024

Daniel A. Fajri, Jakarta – Indonesian Health Minister Budi Gunadi Sadikin urges people to maintain their health and immunity amid the spread of infection of several influenza variants in Indonesia, including Hand, Foot and Mouth Disease (HFMD) also known as Singapore Flu.

"When we get an infection like the flu, it is important that our immune system is not weak," Budi Gunadi Sadikin said at the Presidential Palace in Jakarta on Thursday, March 28.

Budi explained that influenza has many variations that continue to mutate, such as H1N1 or swine flu, H5N1 or avian flu, and Singapore flu or HFMD. He claimed that HFMD is not yet a major threat to society at this time.

"The most common is not the Singapore flu, but the common flu. There is H1N1, H5N1, there are many variants and the flu never stops mutating," Budi said.

Based on the Ministry of Health's report as of the 11th week of 2024 or around early March, 5,461 people were recorded to have been infected with Singapore Flu.

Singapore Flu or FHMD is a viral infection that causes mouth ulcers and blisters on the skin. Singapore flu is caused by infection with Coxsackievirus A16 and Coxsackievirus A6, types of viruses in the enterovirus group. The virus lives in nasal and throat secretions, saliva, feces, and fluid from blisters on the skin.

Citing kemkes.go.id, the characteristic of Singapore flu is reddish, rubbery spots on the palms of the hands, mouth, and feet. When the Singapore flu first appears, a person will experience a change in skin color to bright red and spots, like rubber, measuring 4-8 millimeters. A person will also experience sore throat or mouth pain.

Budi also emphasized that FHMD is not a deadly variant like bird flu. "So, once again, don't sleep less, don't eat less, and make sure you have stamina," he said.

Source: https://en.tempo.co/read/1851431/indonesia-records-over-5000-people-infected-with-singapore-flu-govt-urges-public-to-maintain-immunit