Indonesia will prioritize red zones in Java and Bali for the first round of the coronavirus vaccine as a way to stop the pandemic. The health workers will be the first to get the vaccine.
Reported from the Jakarta Post, Muhadjir Efendy, the Minister of Coordinating Human Development and Culture said that President Joko “Jokowi” had ordered his administration to prioritize red zones for vaccination.
“[We cannot] administer shots on random people but must instead [prioritize] certain people based on risk zoning,” he added
Targeting high-risk zones for vaccination was expected to curb virus transmission and eventually save the entire population. Java and Bali, where about 60% of Indonesia’s 267 million populations reside, were chosen as the priority due to the number of confirmed cases.
“Out of the 10 provinces with the most confirmed cases, most of them are in Java and Bali islands,” said Siti Nadia Tarmizi, the spokeswoman of Indonesia’s COVID-19 vaccination program on Wednesday as quoted by tempo.co.
The plan to prioritize the two islands for vaccination came to the surface after the country received its first batch of coronavirus vaccine candidates from Chinese pharmaceutical firm Sinovac. Moreover, the government agreed to administer the first round of the vaccine to the line of health workers.
“The first round of vaccination will be for health workers in Java and Bali,” Health Minister Terawan Agus Putranto said in a meeting with the House of Representatives (DPR).
When the vaccination will take place has not been determined yet. The vaccine itself is currently under the clinical trial conducted by the state-owned pharmaceutical company Bio Farma and expected to be available in January.
However, the Vaccine Clinical Trial Team from the University of Padjajaran, Sunaryati Sudigdoadi, stated that it is impossible to conduct vaccination in January 2021.
“I heard people said that we will start the vaccination in January. We cannot do it yet” she said as quoted on medcome.id