We hope that over time, there will be more dengue vaccine innovations so that there will be many choices
Jakarta (ANTARA) - The Indonesian Pediatric Society (IDAI) has expressed the hope that more dengue vaccine options with a wider reach will be made available in the country.

"We hope that over time, there will be more dengue vaccine innovations so that there will be many choices," head of the coordination work unit for tropical infections and diseases at IDAI, Dr. Anggraini Alam, Sp.A(K), said during a virtual talk on Wednesday.

Currently, there is one dengue vaccine available in Indonesia, and it has received a permit from the National Agency of Drug and Food Control (BPOM), she noted. The vaccine, which is administered in three doses, is available for children aged 9–16 years who have been infected with dengue.

The dengue vaccine is readily available in hospitals and pediatric clinics for outpatient treatment.

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Alam said she hopes that more vaccine options would be made available, which can be used over a wider age range, are affordable, and require only two doses.

Preventive measures are more important than curative measures, she emphasized. For that reason, innovation in dengue vaccines is needed as part of efforts to prevent dengue in Indonesia.

Dengue, which is characterized by sudden high fever, is caused by the dengue virus and is transmitted by the Aedes aegypti mosquito. In addition to high fever, its symptoms include headache, muscle and joint pain, pain behind the eyes, skin rash, loss of appetite, bleeding, nausea, and vomiting.

Earlier, Indonesia’s Technical Advisory Group on Immunization (ITAGI) had noted that the dengue virus mostly infects children and teenagers.

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"(In) most of our cases, (the patients) are under 9 years old," chairperson of ITAGI, Sri Rezeki Hadinegoro, informed at the commemoration of ASEAN Dengue Day on June 15, 2022.

A study conducted on 1,800 children aged 1–18 years in 14 provinces showed that 25 percent of one-year-old children had been exposed to dengue, she noted.

It also found that 50 percent of children aged 5 years and 90 percent of teens aged 18 years had suffered from the disease.

Thus, the disease can be considered hyperendemic, the ITAGI chairperson said.

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Translator: Nanien Yuniar, Raka Adji
Editor: Fardah Assegaf
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