More than 3 million COVID-19 doses arrive in Indonesia via COVAX
The Moderna vaccines, donated by the United States Government, will accelerate ongoing vaccination efforts amid a second wave of COVID-19
JAKARTA, Indonesia – Almost a year and a half into the pandemic, Indonesia is now seeing its worst COVID-19 outbreak. As of early July, more than 2.3 million COVID-19 cases and 63,000 deaths have been confirmed. In response, the country is stepping up public health measures while aiming to accelerate vaccinations and has set a goal of inoculating two million people per day by August.
Those efforts received a boost this afternoon when a plane carrying more than 3 million Moderna COVID-19 doses touched down at Jakarta’s Soekarno-Hatta International Airport. The vaccines were shipped and delivered by the COVAX Facility, a partnership co-led by Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance, the World Health Organization (WHO) and the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations (CEPI), with UNICEF as a key implementing partner.
The Moderna vaccines, which were donated by the United States Government, are being administered through COVAX’s dose-sharing mechanism, with an additional 1.5 million doses to be sent at a later date. The shipment is part of 80 million doses the U.S. Government has pledged to share with other countries around the world in support of global equitable access.
Indonesia began its COVID-19 vaccination programme in January 2021 with the aim of immunizing 181.5 million people through a range of vaccines. So far, at least 36 million people have received their first dose with nearly 15 million of them being fully vaccinated.
To support the rollout of the COVID-19 vaccines in all 34 provinces, UNICEF and partners are providing assistance to strengthen the country’s supply and cold chains, training health workers on COVID-19 vaccination and protocols, and working with communities to address misinformation and bolster vaccine confidence.
In addition to this latest shipment, Indonesia has received 8.3 million doses of the AstraZeneca vaccine through the COVAX Facility, with an additional 3.4 million doses expected to arrive in country next week. The doses have been used to bolster the vaccination programme and protect priority groups in the country. By providing 20 per cent of the total number of vaccines needed, free of charge to participating countries, COVAX aims to help reduce mortality rates, protect health systems and resume critical services
But for Indonesia to reach its vaccination targets and prevent future outbreaks, more doses will be needed. With the COVID-19 epicentre shifting to low- and middle-income countries that are struggling to secure access to vaccines, UNICEF is calling for well-supplied countries to donate doses to tackle COVID-19 globally.
“UNICEF commends the United States for fulfilling its pledge to share excess vaccines via the COVAX Facility and urges other countries to follow their example by donating doses now,” said UNICEF Deputy Representative Robert Gass. “Without equitable access to COVID-19 vaccines, there is a greater risk of deadlier or more contagious variants emerging and spreading around the world. We are now seeing this in Indonesia, where the new Delta variant is fuelling an alarming surge in COVID-19 infections. This pandemic will not be over until everyone is safe."