Impact of COVID-19 on Routine Immunization in Indonesia
Quarterly assessment using Interactive Voice Recording (IVR) technology to assess the continuity of immunization services across all 34 provinces during the COVID-19 pandemic
The Ministry of Health in Indonesia with UNICEF conducted rapid quarterly assessments on the continuation of the National Immunization Programme in 2021 amid the COVID-19 pandemic. The assessment aimed at determining the scale of the pandemic’s disruptions on routine immunization and informing tailored interventions to sustain services. Prompt actions are pivotal to prevent vaccine-preventable diseases (VPDs) among children and cushion impacts as observed in 2020, when Indonesia’s complete childhood vaccination coverage rates declined by 11 per cent compared to 2019.
The assessment was conducted in four rounds from April to November 2021 and collected responses from over 4,350 vaccinators working at primary health facilities (puskesmas) across Indonesia’s 34 provinces. The assessment found that almost half of the reporting puskesmas provided routine immunization services once per week. A majority of respondents from puskesmas reported deploying fewer than five vaccinators. Vaccine stockout was reported by almost half of the respondents, similarly, over half of the respondents reported difficulties in implementing school-based immunization. Amid these challenges, approximately 5 per cent of respondents reported incidence of VPDs in their areas.
Throughout 2021, the findings of the assessment, complemented by a real-time dashboard, were utilized by the Ministry of Health for continuous programme improvement, with the final analysis informing routine immunization efforts in 2022.