These maximum efforts include the booster vaccination that we all need
Jakarta (ANTARA) - The community still needs the third or booster COVID-19 vaccine dose even though COVID-19 cases have declined and the end of the pandemic is in sight, health expert Prof. Tjandra Yoga Aditama has said.

Data from the World Health Organization (WHO) showed that as of October 5, 2022, COVID-19 cases in Southeast Asia had declined by 17 percent.

The professor, in a statement on Sunday, noted that in accordance with the statement of the Director General of WHO, Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, people must make maximum efforts in the last phase towards the end of the pandemic.

"These maximum efforts include the booster vaccination that we all need," he remarked.

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Aditama, who is the former director of infectious diseases at WHO South-East Asia and is currently a professor at the Faculty of Medicine of the University of Indonesia, said that Indonesia's vaccination coverage still needs to be increased because so far, only around 62 percent of the population has been fully vaccinated.

According to him, the community needs to get the booster shot because the world is not in a completely safe situation yet. Data showed that several European countries experienced an increase in COVID-19 cases in the last few weeks.

He added that aside from the COVID-19 vaccine, people should also get vaccines for other diseases, such as influenza, meningitis, and pneumococcal vaccines.

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"For some diseases, including COVID-19, we really need to get vaccines, whether there is a pandemic or not," he remarked.

As part of efforts to boost community immunity, the Indonesian government launched a nationwide vaccination program on January 13, 2021, targeting as many as 234,666,020 citizens.

According to data provided by the COVID-19 Handling Task Force, as of October 8, 2022, as many as 204,690,338 Indonesians have received the first vaccine dose, 171,310,100 have been administered the second dose, 64,007,521 have taken the third dose or first booster, and 637,548 have received the fourth dose or second booster.

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Translator: Lia Wanadriani, Raka Adji
Editor: Fardah Assegaf
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