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Indonesia – Health Issues

Indonesia is a diverse country with a population of over 270 million people spread across 17,000 islands. The country has made significant progress in improving its health indicators over the past few decades, but still faces a number of health challenges. In this article, we will explore the common health issues that affect the population in Indonesia, as well as the prevalence of smoking and the legislation in place to address it.

Common Health Issues

Infectious Diseases

Indonesia is still grappling with a number of infectious diseases, which can have serious consequences for public health. Malaria, tuberculosis, and dengue fever are among the most common diseases in the country. Other illnesses that are prevalent include cholera, typhoid fever, and hepatitis A and B.

Non-communicable Diseases

Non-communicable diseases (NCDs) are also a significant health issue in Indonesia. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), NCDs are responsible for 71% of all deaths in the country. The most common NCDs in Indonesia are cardiovascular diseases, cancers, and chronic respiratory diseases.

Maternal and Child Health

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Indonesia has made significant strides in reducing maternal and child mortality rates over the past few decades, but these rates are still higher than in many other countries. The country’s maternal mortality rate is 305 deaths per 100,000 live births, while its under-five mortality rate is 23 deaths per 1,000 live births.

Mental Health

Mental health is a growing concern in Indonesia, but resources for mental health care are limited. Stigma surrounding mental illness also prevents many people from seeking the help they need. According to the WHO, the prevalence of mental disorders in Indonesia is 9.8%.

Smoking in Indonesia

Smoking is a major public health issue in Indonesia, with a high prevalence of smoking among both adults and youth. According to the WHO, approximately 61% of men and 4.5% of women in Indonesia smoke tobacco products. The smoking prevalence among youth is also high, with 8.8% of boys and 1.4% of girls aged 13-15 being current smokers.

Attitudes Towards Smoking

Despite the high prevalence of smoking, attitudes towards smoking in Indonesia are mixed. While many Indonesians recognize the health risks associated with smoking, smoking is still seen as a socially acceptable behavior in many parts of the country. In fact, smoking is often considered a symbol of social status and masculinity.

Legislation on Smoking

Indonesia has some legislation in place to address smoking, but it is not as comprehensive as in many other countries. The government has banned smoking in certain public places, such as airports, hospitals, and schools, but enforcement is often lax. Tobacco advertising is also banned in Indonesia, but this ban is not always enforced.

The Indonesian government has also been criticized for its close ties to the tobacco industry. The tobacco industry wields significant political influence in the country and has been successful in blocking more stringent tobacco control measures.

Indonesia faces a number of health challenges, including infectious diseases, non-communicable diseases, and maternal and child health issues. Smoking is also a major public health issue in the country, with a high prevalence of smoking among both adults and youth. While some legislation is in place to address smoking, enforcement is often lax, and the government’s close ties to the tobacco industry are a significant barrier to more comprehensive tobacco control measures.

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