UGM team, Disaster Response Unit (DERU), was dispatched to Agats in Asmat, Papua province, to address malnutrition issue. The team consisted of 7 people who were led by Secretary of Directorate of Community Service UGM, Dr. Rachmawan Budiarto, as well as Head of Sub-Directorate of Community Empowerment, Nanung Agus Fitriyanto, Ph.D.
Rachmawan said there were two teams who were dispatched on Wednesday (24/1) and Thursday (25/1). Both would be synergized with the regional government, Ministry of Health, and Military Force in addressing malnutrition and its various impacts.
“The project also aims to prepare the next UGM team to conduct a mid-term multidisciplinary programme,” said Rachmawan on Sunday (28/1).
According to Rachmawan, several activities were held in Agats, including coordination with work unit led by Commander of Military Resort as well as Regent of the region, discussion with the regional government, the military as well as Ministry of Health, and projects in several districts.
“UGM team also installs 200Wp of Photovoltaic system in Centre for Community Health Service which has yet to obtain electricity access from the National Electricity Company (PLN) in order to support health services,” he added.
Rachmawan said transportation facilities from Timika to Agats is very limited and the National Electricity Company only provided electricity for 2 out of 23 districts. Meanwhile, the emergency countermeasure has been well conducted by the regional government, the military, the police, Ministry of Health, church, traditional leaders, Non-Governmental Organization, as well as other institutions.
“The socio-cultural condition of Asmat tribe becomes a big challenge in enhancing their health and prosperity,” said Rachmawan.
In line with those statements, Nanung said there are several recommendations which can be done in Agats, including comprehensive and systemic support toward Asmat Regency, not only Agats District, as a follow-up to the emergency countermeasure. In addition, a mid-term programme is required, including the dispatch of multidisciplinary teams.
“In the near future, the teams that will be dispatched consisting of specialist doctors, general doctors, and community health doctors. This mid-term programme has to synergize with multi-stakeholders in order to encourage Asmat District in developing fundamental infrastructures, including electricity, clean water, and environmental health,” said Nanung.
Until today, the total number of mortality in Asmat District reached 70 people that consisted of 66 mortalities caused by measles and four of which were caused by malnutrition.