Vaccination in children under six is not unimportant
Jakarta (ANTARA) – Experts, who are the Vaccine Committee’s members, are still collecting scientific data regarding the safety and effectiveness of the COVID-19 vaccine for children under six years of age in Indonesia.
“Those kids must also be protected. Currently, we are still collecting data to find the safest and most effective (vaccine) for children under six, including babies,” professor of Microbiology at the Faculty of Medicine, University of Indonesia (FKUI) Amin Soebandrio stated in Jakarta, Friday.
Soebandrio noted that scientific research conducted during the COVID-19 pandemic reported that efforts to protect the public from the risk of COVID-19 infection apply to all age groups, including toddlers.
However, the experts are still looking for the right vaccine criteria for the toddler age group based on the efficacy and the caused side effects, he remarked.
On a separate occasion, Chair of the Indonesian Technical Advisory Group on Immunization (ITAGI) Professor Sri Rezeki stated that the toddlers’ immune system, which tends to be stronger than adults, is one of the considerations for vaccination for children under six years of age not being recommended in Indonesia.
“Vaccination in children under six is not unimportant, but we know children exposed to COVID-19 will have milder symptoms, except for children with comorbidities,” Rezeki stated.
Another consideration is that the activity of children under six can still be controlled by parents, so the risk factor for transmission from other people outside the environment can be controlled.
“Meanwhile, children above six already go to school and interact with many people,” Rezeki stated.
The ITAGI is still focused on pursuing the target to complete vaccination coverage for those in the age bracket of six to 11 years in Indonesia, with a target figure of 26.40 million children.
According to data from the Health Ministry’s COVID-19 Vaccination Dashboard on Thursday, the coverage for dose one for those in the age group of six to 11 years had reached 21.16 million children, or 80.16 percent, while coverage for dose two had reached 17.52 million children, or equal to 66.38 percent.
“That is why we are pursuing this (vaccination for children from six to 11 years). Gradually, the age target will be lowered,” Rezeki concluded.
Related news: Ministry to further study children’s vaccinations to boost immunity
Related news: Ministry considers COVID-19 vaccine administration for children
Related news: SOE COVID-19 vaccine prioritized for children, serves as booster