Looking back at the history of Indonesia is able to be free from the polio virus thanks to vaccine immunization

Merdeka.com – Immunization is very important in an effort to build the body’s resistance against certain diseases. Immunization is part of an effort to prevent is better than cure.

Immunization is a specific and cost effective public health intervention. One of the massive immunization efforts that have been carried out by the government is the National Immunization Week (PIN) program which was started in 1995. The PIN at that time was a program to eradicate the polio virus.

“The oral polio vaccine in 1995-1997 was given to anyone, regardless of whether someone had been given the polio vaccine regularly or not. For those who have received routine polio immunization, then giving back the polio vaccine will strengthen their immune system. Those who have not received the polio vaccine can be said to have received basic immunization, “explained the Field Epidemiology Training Program (FETP) Advisor, I Nyoman Kandun MPH, in a Productive Dialogue with the theme of Learning from the Success of a Polio PIN, organized by the Committee for Handling COVID-19 and Recovery. National Economy (KPCPEN), Tuesday (17/11).

The PIN was aimed at eradicating polio in Indonesia. The community needs to know the stages of handling infectious diseases, namely controlling, eliminating and eradicating.

“Controlling is reducing the incidence of infectious diseases. Meanwhile, eliminating is pressing to a very low number, it can be up to zero, but the virus does not disappear. Eradicating means that in addition to reducing transmission to zero, the virus can also be eliminated. For example, smallpox, where there is no more smallpox virus, so we can say that smallpox is eradicating, “he explained.

Immunization and surveillance consultant for the CDC’s Atlanta office of disease prevention and control, Jane Soepardi, stated that immunization through vaccines has proven to be the most effective public health approach. In other words, it has also been proven that without vaccines and immunization programs, humans cannot win the war against the virus.

The coverage of routine polio immunization, which began in 1995, had decreased due to the impact of the multi-dimensional crisis in the 1998-2002 period. In 2002, the government did a new PIN again. In 2005 the wild polio virus was identified in Cidahu, Sukabumi, West Java.

“Handling the polio virus in Cidahu has actually been carried out in a fast action known as a sub PIN, so that the wild polio virus that enters Cidahu does not spread. But the virus spreads to Sumatra and other areas, ”said Nyoman.

The government then set it as KLB and returned to running the PIN. As a result, polio was successfully eradicated again in 2006. Then in 2014, the WHO gave the polio-free label to Indonesia. “Until now, no polio sufferers have been found caused by the wild polio virus. So what can be done to minimize the spread of the virus? Immunization coverage should be as high as possible, if necessary 100 percent,” said Nyoman.

The key to success in freeing Indonesia from polio, according to Jane, is support from government officials who have a strong desire to remove this virus from Indonesia. Apart from that, the support of sufficient health and logistical resources will also help Indonesia be polio-free.

“No less important, communication with the public through various media is carried out well so that immunization with appropriate vaccines can be accepted and proven to be an effective health approach.”

Jane advised people who are not yet convinced about the effectiveness of vaccines that making vaccines is much more difficult and the conditions more difficult than making drugs. Because vaccines are for people who are still healthy, while drugs are for people who are already sick.

“Therefore, the main requirement for vaccines is safety. The target of vaccines is for healthy people to stay healthy and become immune to certain vaccines. “

In addition, from a health investment perspective, Nyoman said immunization is an investment in the future for Indonesian children. Equipped with immunizations that protect them from infectious diseases, Indonesian children can grow up physically and mentally healthy. “That way Indonesian children can grow up healthy and smart,” he concluded. [bim]

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