TEMPO.CO, Jakarta - Indonesia plans to administer vaccine booster for the general public in early 2022, based on the recommendations of the Indonesian Technical Advisory Group on Immunization (ITAGI).
In medical terms, a booster dose is an extra administration of a vaccine after an earlier dose. A booster injection or booster dose is a re-exposure to the immunizing antigen.
Covid-19 vaccination spokesperson Siti Nadia Tarmizi on Wednesday explained that booster shots are justified for two reasons; it will be needed to act as an added layer of protection and prevent the spread of the delta variant in Indonesia, and to counter the drop in efficacy of Sinovac vaccines following the second dose injections.
“There is a decrease of antibody titers for the Sinovac vaccines, which is why a booster injection is planned but after 12 months. We will administer the booster jabs to the public next year,” said Tarmizi on August 4.
Currently, the vaccine booster is only for health workers as they are more susceptible in contracting Covid-19. Nadia asked the public not to force their will to get the third booster dose.
The Indonesian Health Ministry issued a Circular stating that the healthcare workers will be given Moderna vaccine boosters. Experts believe the combination of Moderna’s mRNA type and Sinovac’s inactivated vaccine - which healthcare workers were inoculated with - can significantly increase a person’s antibody.
The government currently has 4.5 million Moderna vaccine doses obtained from the United States. Citing Antaranews, as of August 5, there are 19,250 healthcare workers who have received the vaccine booster from a total of 1.47 million.