By Dorpaima Lumban Gaol
JAKARTA – In recent weeks the number of cases of people having the COVID-19 virus is increasing. Based on data released by the Indonesia Government, there is a daily spike in cases in 34 provinces in Indonesia. As of July 16, 2021, last week the number of patients affected by COVID-19 increasing up to 989,98 people. The Covid-19 National Task Force stated that the highest number was in Jakarta, followed by West Java. The rose of these cases also brings Indonesia to become one of the highest cases over southeast Asia countries.
Other than that, death cases are also increasing than usual. Some of the patients passing away were those who had been fully vaccinated. The Indonesian Doctors Association team stated that around 10 out of 20 medical workers died from COVID-19 even though they had received the Sinovac vaccine. Through this case, the question arises, do Indonesian people need to inject a third dose of vaccine to increase antibodies?
Third dose of vaccine
Since the emergence of various variants of COVID-19, several countries talk about the third dose of vaccine. The third dose of vaccine can increase antibodies. Grace Wange, an Epidemiologist for ISOP Indonesia states that a re-booster is useful to get. And this is going on in a few countries such as the United States, France, including the United Arab Emirates (UAE) with a combination of the Pfizer vaccine, and the recommendation has gone through a clinical trial process.
The head of the vaccine production of Sinovac, Yin Weidong, confirms this statement. Yin claims that the third dose of the Sinovac vaccine can increase antibodies by up to 10 times. Although it has passed clinical trials and recommendations for its use from experts, the injection of additional doses has not yet received permission from WHO.
With a large number of cases, Indonesia should focus on its vaccination program. So all people in Indonesia get vaccines as one of the crucial handlers in handling this pandemic. Based on data from Our World In Data, as of 28 June 2021, about 10% or 27.6 million Indonesians have been vaccinated from the total population of about 276 million.
A spokesperson for the Ministry of Health’s COVID-19 vaccination, dr. Nadia Tarmizi told the media that the current focus is accelerating vaccination. “Let’s first concentrate on accelerating the injection to two doses, which is clear that the dose is by clinical trials that have been carried out before”, she said.