Jakarta – Nine months since the Indonesian government ran the COVID-19 vaccination program, the vaccination rate in Papua Province is lowest, a recent national count says.
According to data from the official website of the Health Ministry, as many as 22.98 percent of the targeted people in Papua have received the first dosage of the COVID-19 vaccine as of October 7, 2021. While only 15.24 percent have completed the second dose.
The government has targeted vaccination of 208,265,720 people across the country comprising health workers, the elderly, public officials, vulnerable communities, and the general public, as well as children ages 12-17 years old.
Of the said target, 96,882,855 people have received the first injection of the COVID-19 vaccine, or 46.52 percent of the total target, and only 13.14 percent, or 55.162.842 people, have been fully vaccinated.
Data shows that vaccination rates across the country are not evenly distributed. Some provinces show lower rates than others and are far from the target.
The Ministry's spokesperson of Vaccination, Siti Nadia Tarmizi, claimed there were two reasons behind the gap in vaccination coverage.
"First, the Health Ministry has prioritized certain areas to be given vaccination because they have a large population and a high number of COVID-19 cases in the area," said Tarmizi on October 8, as quoted by CNN Indonesia.
As for the second reason, Tarmizi said it was because the local government did not optimize the vaccination program in their respective regions.