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Quake survivors immunised, hospitals get relief

INDONESIA: Indonesian authorities started to immunise thousands of earthquake survivors against measles on Wednesday and helicopters swept the devastated region on Java island to check for isolated victims.

Indonesia Health Minister Siti Fadillah Supari said the government was also evacuating patients from hospitals in the immediate area to more distant cities to relieve overcrowding.

"For now (the hospitals) are starting to get tidy and we have penetrated isolated areas using mobile clinics ... helicopters dispatch food while airlifting the patients. The supply of medicine is also flowing," she told Reuters.

"Today we are continuing to comb (the region) to make sure there are no untouched areas." The death toll from Saturday's quake had reached 5,846 as of Wednesday and around 130,000 were listed as homeless.

So far there are no signs of any outbreaks of disease, but medicines were being sent to affected areas to prevent diseases such as measles and malaria.

Around the Bantul area hardest hit by the quake, entire villages were destroyed, homes reduced to piles of wood, tiles and tin, and survivors used whatever they could find to construct makeshift tents.

Dozens of countries ranging from Japan and the United States to Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates have pledged cash, emergency supplies and personnel, and U.N. agencies and private international organisations like the Red Cross began moving aid in shortly after Saturday morning's quake. Bantul, Wednesday, Reuters.

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