Indonesia Shortens Vaccine Booster Interval for Elderly to 3 Months
22 February 2022 21:36 WIB
TEMPO.CO, Jakarta - Indonesia’s Health Ministry decided to shorten the time gap between the second and third dose of vaccine boosters for the elderly at age 60 and above through the circular of the ministry’s Director-General of Disease Prevention and Control No. SR.02.06/II/1123/2022.
"Previously, the booster shot is given at least six months [after the primary vaccination course]. Starting today, the booster dose for the elderly can be given at an interval of at least three months after completing the primary vaccination course,” said the ministry’s spokesperson for COVID-19 Vaccination, Siti Nadia Tarmizi, in today’s statement, Feb. 22.
Nadia explained that the circular was a follow-up to circular No. HK.02.02/II/252/2022 concerning booster dose of COVID-19 vaccine on January 12, 2022, and the recommendations issued by Indonesia's Technical Advisory Group on Immunization’s (ITAGI) Expert Advisory Committee No. ITAGI/SR/5/2022 on February 21, 2022.
Despite the primary vaccine regimen a person had received, Nadia confirmed, the booster shot for the elderly could either be homologous or heterologous by adjusting to the availability of the vaccine in each region.
Nadia emphasized that all brands of vaccines that have been granted the EUA from the Food and Drug Monitoring Agency (BPOM) and recommended by ITAGI could be used as boosters for the elderly. However, since the Sinovac vaccine is limited and is prioritized for children aged 6-11, other brands are recommended for the vaccine booster.
M JULNIS FIRMANSYAH