Jakarta (ANTARA) - DKI Jakarta Health Service's Surveillance, Epidemiology, and Immunization Department Head, Budi Setiawan, stated that the dengue vaccine is still optional and not included in the immunization program from the provincial or central government.

"It can be obtained at several private hospitals. However, it remains an optional immunization that has not been facilitated regarding budgeting from the government," he remarked in an online seminar to commemorate World Immunization Week on Thursday.

Setiawan explained that the vaccine can be administered to individuals aged 6-45 years, who have had dengue hemorrhagic fever (DHF) or have been infected.

"The age range is considered effective due to tests carried out for vaccine safety and effectiveness. The vaccine is given twice, with a three-month gap," he elaborated.

Meanwhile, the Association of Indonesian Internal Medicine Specialists (PAPDI) referring to a long-term study for 4.5 years after vaccination stated that the dengue vaccine could prevent severity and hospitalization rates of up to 84 percent and overall protection against dengue fever with symptoms of up to 61 percent.

However, the dengue vaccine has contraindications for pregnant, breastfeeding women and groups with immunodeficiency, namely a condition in which the body cannot fight infections and diseases, such as HIV, as evidenced by immune disorders, congenital or acquired immunodeficiency, such as the use of high doses of steroids and immunotherapy.

Regarding data on dengue fever cases in Jakarta, the Health Service stated that up to April 16, some 3,875 cases were reported, with 310 cases in January, 767 cases in February, 2,163 cases in March, and 635 cases in April.

The agency had made several efforts to suppress the number of cases, including by intensifying the eradication of mosquito nests (PSN) through water reservoir identification.

The other steps taken comprised listing identified water reservoirs and carrying out the 3M Plus movement, namely draining, covering, and recycling.

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Translator: Lia Wanadriani, Resinta Sulistiyandari
Editor: Azis Kurmala
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