The COVID-19 Task Forced has appealed to the operators of public activity restriction command posts in villages to pay more attention to vaccination programs for special groups, such as people with disabilities and the elderly.
"Vaccination must follow the 'no one left behind' concept, meaning that disabled people and those with no access must be assisted. The command posts must invite them to vaccination facilities and facilitate their access," said Alexander K. Ginting, Head of Health Handling of the COVID-19 Task Force, in Jakarta on Tuesday.
In the virtual event, entitled, “Acceleration of Vaccination: The Solution to Prevent New Viruses,” Ginting said it is important to consider that many people with disabilities and the elderly find it difficult to travel and join queues for vaccinations, and many do not have a vehicle to get to the location.
He advised local residents and officers on duty to help special groups, including pregnant women, get vaccinated, by diligently disseminating information about vaccines, providing assistance and offering pick-ups so they can comfortably get vaccinated and return home.
“They are also the elderly who cannot fight with those who are young and healthy while lining up together at vaccination centers. Residents must also be encouraged to become volunteers to help register, invite and accompany them, then take them back to the homes," he stressed.
This issue needs special attention, considering the elderly population can continue to increase the mortality rate if infected with COVID-19, he further added, affirming, “So we cannot just say 'hello’ or ‘come join' during this vaccination campaign. You have to invite and you have to pick up, especially special groups. In this case, they are pregnant women, teenagers, the elderly and those with disabilities.”
Spokesperson for the COVID-19 Vaccination of the Health Ministry Siti Nadia Tarmizi said that the new variant, a mutation of the SARS-CoV-2 virus, could be transmitted to anyone regardless of their age.
“It can attack anyone, from infants, toddlers to adults, and even the elderly. Among old people, we know the risk becomes higher in people who have comorbidities or congenital diseases, as well as in children,” Tarmizi stressed.
Although, currently, 98 percent of the new variants in Indonesia are the Delta variant, Tarmizi warned citizens of new variants that can possibly emerge and spread around the country, while urging all parties to not be complacent about the current decline in cases and work together and stay vigilant.
This can be done by continuously maintaining health protocols and getting vaccinated to protect everyone from COVID-19 transmission, she added.
“This means that we should not become complacent at this condition, we must remain vigilant. Insufficient vaccination coverage means we need to always be disciplined in following health protocols,” she said. (Antaranews)