Schools were closed during the pandemic, so immunizations were also stopped.
REPUBLIKA.CO.ID, MAKASSAR — Head of Representative Office UNICEF Sulawesi and Maluku regions Henky Widjaja said a number of diseases arose as a result of immunization at school should be stopped. Immunization in schools had to be stopped due to the outbreak of the corona virus in early March 2020.
“Since schools were closed, polio cases have been found in several places, diphtheria, the impact of rubella has also spread, even though all these diseases have been zero in Indonesia,” he said, Sunday (7/11).
Henky explained that immunization in schools greatly affects children’s immunity with various types of vaccines. A number of diseases that can occur due to the absence of vaccines for children are tetanus, polio, tuberculosis, diphtheria, measles, rubella and uterine cancer.
“In South Sulawesi, we don’t have the data yet, but there have been some cases in South Sulawesi and other provinces, where polio spreads to outbreaks in Papua and West Java,” he said.
Henky explained that prior to the pandemic, the government had promoted immunization services in schools, which admittedly had a fairly low coverage. However, during the pandemic all services were stopped until it was finally made worse by the corona virus.
“During the pandemic, people also don’t go to school. Now, this is what the government is now trying to encourage again by conducting the School Children Immunization Month (BIAS) for 2021 in South Sulawesi,” he said.
The BIAS 2021 program has just been released by the South Sulawesi Provincial Government together with Unicef to increase children’s immunity. This childhood immunization targets class 1 for the tetanus diphtheria vaccine.
“This immunization is an ongoing focus for children, so there is no time limit and it continues,” he said.