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Indonesia replaces imported COVID vaccines with safer domestic ones

Antara News - May 3, 2024

Jakarta – The Indonesian government has replaced imported COVID-19 vaccines with domestically produced ones that have lower chances of side effects, according to Health Minister Budi Gunadi Sadikin.

"Now, the government is only distributing domestically produced vaccines that are relatively safer," he said at Merdeka Palace, Jakarta, on Friday, in response to reports on the AstraZeneca vaccine causing thrombosis, or blood clots.

Sadikin affirmed that COVID-19 vaccines are still needed in Indonesia, particularly to protect people with comorbidities and those planning to travel overseas.

Even though Indonesia has transitioned from the COVID-19 pandemic to endemic status, he noted that the SARS-CoV-2 virus is still a global health concern.

He said that the government has been advising those scheduled to join the Hajj pilgrimage this year to take another dose of the COVID-19 vaccine.

"We would like to remind prospective Hajj pilgrims of the fact that COVID-19 still exists. However, it is up to them to use the vaccines or not, as we have transitioned from pandemic to endemic," he added.

The minister then appealed to people with comorbidities to protect themselves from the virus by getting another dose of the vaccine.

"You can do vaccination again. Do not forget to use domestic vaccines," he told people with comorbidities.

Earlier, it was reported that the Ministry of Health has been replacing foreign COVID-19 vaccines with national vaccines, including the IndoVac vaccine produced by state-owned Bio Farma in Bandung, since 2022.

Additionally, Indonesia is producing the InaVac vaccine, which is being manufactured by the University of Airlangga and PT BiotisPharmaceutical Indonesia in Bogor district, West Java.

Another national vaccine circulating in Indonesia is AWcorna, which is being produced by PT Etana Biotechnologies Indonesia in collaboration with China's Abogen-Yuxi Walvax in East Jakarta.

Source: https://en.antaranews.com/news/312534/indonesia-replaces-imported-covid-vaccines-with-safer-domestic-one