W. Java to pro­mote vac­ci­na­tion pro­gram

The Jakarta Post - - NATIONAL -

BANDUNG: As the Health Min­istry has de­cided to hold a si­mul­ta­ne­ous diph­the­ria vac­ci­na­tion pro­gram in Jakarta, West Java and Ban­ten fol­low­ing an out­break, West Java Gov­er­nor Ahmad Heryawan has called for res­i­dents to wel­come the pro­gram.

“For the sake of ev­ery­one, don’t op­pose the vac­ci­na­tion,” he said in the prov­ince’s cap­i­tal city of Bandung on Thurs­day.

West Java is among 20 prov­inces suf­fer­ing from the out­break since Jan­uary, ac­cord­ing to data from the Health Min­istry. There have been 123 cases of diph­the­ria de­tected in 20 re­gen­cies and mu­nic­i­pal­i­ties since Jan­uary in the prov­ince.

There have been con­cerns about an­ti­vac­cine sen­ti­ments na­tion­wide, rang­ing from re­li­gious to health is­sues, that have ham­pered the suc­cess of gov­ern­ment’s vac­cine pro­grams for in­fants and tod­dlers.

Heryawan told all res­i­dents that the vac­ci­na­tions aimed to pro­tect the younger gen­er­a­tions.

The prov­ince aimed to sup­port the cen­tral gov­ern­ment’s pro­gram by con­vinc­ing peo­ple not to have doubts about the vac­cines and the process of ad­min­is­ter­ing them.

He also as­serted that the gov­ern­ment had joined hands with the In­done­sia Ulema Coun­cil (MUI) to is­sue a ha­lal edict for the vac­cines to con­vince the pub­lic.

The plan is part of the min­istry’s Out­break Re­sponse Im­mu­niza­tion (ORI) pro­gram as 20 prov­inces have de­clared a health emer­gency (KLB) of diph­the­ria. At least 95 re­gen­cies and mu­nic­i­pal­i­ties across the prov­inces have de­tected diph­the­ria in­fec­tions in re­cent months. — JP

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