Bandung, West Java (ANTARA) - The provincial government of West Java is ready to carry out a simultaneous polio vaccination program for children aged 0–59 months from April 3, 2023.

The polio vaccinations will be carried out in two stages: the first stage will be from April 3–15 and the second stage from May 15–27.

Immunizations must be carried out fully, head of disease prevention and control at the West Java Health Office Rochady H.S. Wibawa said in a written statement here on Saturday.

“It must be full in two stages to completely protect children. At least 95 percent of the targets in West Java, namely 3.9 million under-five children, must be achieved,” he added.

The vaccinations will be carried out at all community health centers (puskesmas) and integrated health posts (posyandus) as well as other designated locations, such as kindergarten schools.

After the program is carried out for a week, teams will trace under-five children that have not been vaccinated.

Wibawa informed that oral polio vaccines will be provided during the program so that they do not cause side effects such as fever. However, vaccines will not be given to children with weakened immune systems due to fever, diarrhea, or HIV infection.

"Vaccinators are also ready to carry out simultaneous immunizations in West Java," he said.

Head of the Indonesian Ulema Council (MUI) of West Java, Rachmat Syafeii, stressed that the vaccines that will be used in the program have been declared halal.

"This is part of efforts to (maintain) children's health," he said.

Assistant for government and people's welfare at the Regional Secretary of West Java and head of the West Java polio vaccination implementation team, Dedi Supandi, emphasized that the vaccine stock has been prepared.

"Today, vaccines arrived from Bio Farma (state-owned pharmaceutical holding company) and dissemination of information in districts and cities has also been carried out from March 28–29,” he informed at the "West Java Responds to Polio" event in Bandung city on Friday.

The highest target for vaccinations is set in Bogor district, namely around 546 thousand children, while the lowest is in Banjar city, namely around 12 thousand.

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Translator: Ajat Sudrajat, Raka Adji
Editor: Azis Kurmala
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