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The Measles Outbreak And Malnutrition Endangering Papua’s Children

Asmat, PAPUANEWSiD – Asmat Regency, Papua. The measles outbreak and malnutrition in Agats district, Asmat Regency, Papua, which appeared to be an emergency ward. Children’s whom took measles and malnutrition because they had diarrehea and vomiting. At least, nine children from various districts were all suffered from malnutrition.

Recently, Agat’s hospital is now treating 13 children for measles and 9 who are malnourished, who now weighs 7.7 kilograms-1.6
kilogram heavier than when they were admitted.

Malnutrition has weakened the children’s immune system, making them prone to viruses. Malnutrition patient were came from a poor quality of life and the low immunization in the regency. Measles and malnutrition have already claimed the lives of 63 in seven districts.

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The remoteness of Asmat regency has worsened the condition. To reach 23 districts in Asmat, travelers can only use a speedboat or longboat, which are costly. The difficult terrain and the nomatic nature of the area’s tribal people are largely to blame for the low immunization coveverage of only 17.3 percent in 2017.

However, the problem was also the result of negligence from residents and local health workers in handling health care in the region. To prevent the situation from further declining, medical teams from the TNI and local administration started a mission to tackle the health emergency in 19 of Asmat’s districts. The local government want to the immunization program would be sustainable in the long-run.

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Obviously, the measles outbreak and malnutrition in Agats districts has shown that any possibility if fund villages or special authonomy funds and special allocation funds for Papua did not use correctly and effectively.

Finally and politically, the measles outbreak and malnutrition have drawn that the local government did not anticipate and to late to
tackle those problems, and the central government under President Joko Widodo’s leadership is enough weak to control and to suppress the local government of Asmat and the Papua’s provinces government for handling those cases which had been taken international attention.

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