As countries and cities all over the world are into the one-year battle against COVID-19, the global effort of mitigation and prevention is still well underway. Simultaneously, there is also the development and distribution of not only effective but also safe vaccines as emphasised by the World Health Organisation (WHO).
In order to get the pandemic under control, vaccinations are important in increasing the immunity of people. It works by training, and preparing the body’s immune system to recognise and fight off the viruses and bacteria they target, therefore they are critical in the battle against COVID-19.
The World Health Organisation stated that as of 18 February 2021, at least seven different vaccines across three platforms have been rolled out in countries with highest priority given to vulnerable populations. In addition to that, currently more than 200 additional vaccine candidates are in development, of which more than 60 are in clinical development.
UCLG ASPAC, as a city and local government association in Asia-Pacific agrees on speeding up the development of safe and effective vaccines against COVID-19, putting emphasis on the role of governments (national and local/regional) to ensure the fair and equitable allocation of the vaccines in countries and of course cities. In other words, the success of COVID-19 vaccinations will contribute to global recovery plans and increased resiliency.
In Indonesia, the country’s Coordinating Minister of Economic Affairs, DR Airlangga highlighted that as of 13 April 2021, 15.6 million doses have been injected for Indonesian citizens, since the beginning of the COVID-19 Vaccination Program back in 13 January 2021, which is considered good progress considering that Indonesia is not a vaccine-producing country.*
Moreover, the program is split into four phases with healthcare receiving the first batch of vaccines, followed by public servants and vulnerable groups of the population, such as the elderly. (Read more about Indonesia and DKI Jakarta’s COVID-19 recovery efforts here)
In the capital city of Jakarta, in fact, is in the phase two of vaccination for elderly groups with having reached 95.31% of elderly, in the Central Jakarta area as confirmed by Suharti Sutar as Deputy Governor of Jakarta for Population Control and Settlement.
Meanwhile, as a Host City of UCLG ASPAC Secretariat, the DKI Jakarta City Hall has been distributing vaccines for public servants and other workers, including all the UCLG ASPAC Secretariat staff members last week, which was welcomed positively by Dr. Bernadia Irawati Tjandradewi as Secretary General of UCLG ASPAC. In her statement, Dr. Bernadia declared that UCLG ASPAC is joining the voices of the international community and health institutions around the world for the temporary release of vaccine patents.
“This is that vaccines can be produced by any country in the world. We call on countries and pharmaceuticals to ensure: the Universal and fair distribution, cost-effective pricing, government involvement and free inoculation for people”, she said.
World Health Organization
By KM Team