Parents urged to keep children at home in Bali after nearly 5,000 adolescent cases recorded

File photo of an official from NTB putting on a face mask for a girl. Photo: NTB provincial government
File photo of an official from NTB putting on a face mask for a girl. Photo: NTB provincial government

As many as 4,980 children in Bali have been infected with the coronavirus since the onset of the pandemic, and the province’s pediatrician association is now urging parents to limit children’s outdoor activities. 

“Children should stay home. Even if they must be taken outside it must be with strict health protocols, avoid the crowds and use masks for children above two years old,” I Gusti Lanang Sidiartha, who heads the Indonesian Pediatric Society (IDAI) in Bali, said yesterday.

According to Sidiartha, COVID-19 cases among children are seeing a spike in the last week, after having declined previously. The majority of cases in Bali stem from their activities outside the home, he explained, from increased contact between individuals and the lack of mask use. 

“This week wasn’t the highest, but it doubled from the week before,” he said. 

Children make up more than 10 percent of COVID-19 cases in Bali generally, Sidiartha said, with 55 active cases as of yesterday. Meanwhile, one in eight COVID-19 patients across Indonesia are those below 18 years of age, according to IDAI. 

Bali has seen a worrying spike in COVID-19 caseload in the past week, with 187 new cases recorded just yesterday. The province had recorded less than 100 cases daily for almost a month, but the numbers have been rising since last weekend. 

Also Read People working from Bali (not via the gov’t initiative) are driving up COVID numbers

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