Expert Warns of El Nino’s Various Effects on Health

Berita392 Dilihat

TEMPO.CO, Jakarta – Professor from Medical Faculty Indonesia University Tjandra Yoga Aditama urged citizens and the government to focus on the management of El Nino which is predicted to continue well into the end of 2023. Tjandra relayed the information in relation to the current famine in Papua. 

“El Nino could cause lack of food and malnutrition due to a disrupted food security,” he said in a press release on Friday, August 4, 2023. He added that Food and Agricultural Organization has released a statement urging countries to mitigate and intervene in the food stock issues caused by El Nino.

Tjandra also said that there are nine potential health risks caused by the effects of El Nino. The health risks are the increase in infectious diseases, water-borne diseases, and the decline of access to health facilities. In addition, Tjandra also warned about the increase in lung diseases, degrading health caused by heat stress, mental disruption, an increase in vector infection diseases, disaster potential, and direct impacts such as injuries or death.

“Director General of WHO has prepared itself to face the possibility of a rising number of viral infections during El Nino, such as dengue, zika, and chikungunya,” said Tjandra. He added that El Nino-induced changes in weather conditions may affect mosquito life patterns, bringing new infectious diseases.

Another consequence of El Nino is the possibility of extreme drought in Indonesia, Australia, and South Asia. “The long drought could cause forest fire, and we need to anticipate it considering Indonesia’s long history with a forest fire and its complex consequences,” Tjandra added.

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Tjandra also hoped that the government, with public support, would prepare itself and take immediate action to solve any problems arising from the effects of El Nino. The government is also expected to prevent any casualties that may happen due to El Nino.

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