JAKARTA, KOMPAS.com – The Indonesian Ministry of Health has announced that it will receive millions of free Covid-19 vaccines from the AstraZeneca pharmaceutical company, as the pandemic continues to have the country in its grip.
“[AstraZeneca] will send 13.7 to 23.1 million doses of the vaccine to Indonesia. Their shipment is carried out as part of a multilateral collaboration with the Global Alliance for Vaccine and Immunization [GAVI],” said Ministry of Health Covid-19 expert Siti Nadia Tarmidzi on Monday.
“The first shipment will be about 25-35 percent of the vaccines, while the second consignment is 65-75 percent of the doses. The Covax Facility, which is a joint initiative between GAVI and the World Health Organization [WHO] issued a letter authorizing the vaccines’ shipment.”
She added that the AstraZeneca vaccines, which is procured under the GAVI scheme to provide Covid-19 vaccines for poor or developing countries, will be distributed throughout Indonesia once it obtains the WHO’s Emergency Use Listing or EUL.
“[The vaccines’ procurement] is a triumph of Indonesian diplomacy, as Covax enabled the country to get free, readily available vaccines,” Nadia noted.
“The AstraZeneca vaccine can also be used for elderly people from the ages of 60 onwards. This is particularly important, as this age group has the highest mortality rate from Covid-19.”
AstraZeneca's Covid-19 vaccine, as well as others from GAVI, are certified by the Independent Allocation of Vaccines Task Force. Indonesia's vaccine drive aims to vaccinate 181 million people to achieve herd immunity, and meet the conditions of the GAVI initiative.
The procurement of the vaccines comes, as the Worldometers website announced that Indonesia has the highest number of active Covid-19 cases in Asia with 175,095. India is next with 169,208 active cases, followed by Iran with 149,989 and Lebanon with 117,093.
Indonesia has 1,089,308 Covid-19 cases as of February 1. 30,277 Indonesians died from the coronavirus after the death toll increased by 279 people over the past 24 hours, while 883,682 are confirmed to have recovered from the coronavirus.
(Writers: Haryanti Puspa Sari, Dian Erika Nugraheny | Editors: Krisiandi, Kristian Erdianto)
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