Vice President of the Republic of Indonesia, Prof. Dr. (H.C.) K. H. Ma’ruf Amin, conveyed government’s commitment to increase coverage of vaccines to be given to the Indonesian people. Until now, there have been 2 types of vaccines that have been using in Indonesia, from pharmaceutical company Sinovac and Astrazeneca. Vice President said, “Number of shots will continue to be increased, both using free of charge vaccines and mutual aid vaccines.”
This message was conveyed when the Vice President received a visit from the Rector of the University of Indonesia, Prof. Ari Kuncoro, S.E., M.A., Ph.D, and his group on Monday, March 8, 2021 at the residence of the Vice President of the Republic of Indonesia, Jl. Diponegoro No. 2, Jakarta. Also participating in the group; Chair of the Board of Trustees (MWA) of the University of Indonesia, Saleh Husin, S.E., M.Si; Vice Chancellor for Academic and Student Affairs, University of Indonesia, Prof. Dr. rer. nat. Abdul Haris; and the Dean of the Faculty of Medicine, University of Indonesia (FKUI), Prof. Dr. dr. Ari Fahrial Syam, Sp.PD-KGEH, MMB.
In a discussion with the Vice President, the Chancellor conveyed support from the University of Indonesia for the government and society through various kinds of research in the midst of Covid-19 pandemic. UI has been heavily involved in conducting clinical trials and producing various innovations to deal with the pandemic. Innovations that have been done by UI include making ventilators and flocked swabs that have been used in various hospitals and other health facilities.
In line with the Chancellor, the FKUI Dean on this occasion also explained that FKUI was involved in the production of the ’red and white vaccine’ which was initiated by a research consortium under the auspices of the Ministry of Research and Technology/National Research and Innovation Agency (Kemenristek/National Agency for Research and Innovation), and plans to conduct clinical trials against three COVID-19 vaccines originating from China and South Korea. In addition, as part of community services, FKUI has currently trained around 1600 vaccinators from students who are ready to help the government accelerate the vaccination process.
Dean of the Faculty of Medicine, Prof. Ari Fahrial Syam also conveyed to the Vice President that the government must anticipate the new variants of SARS-CoV-2 which are already found, especially those that have been reported to have entered Indonesia. “So far there are 3 variants of the virus that are suspected to have spread in the world, namely B.1.1.7 from England, B.1.351 from South Africa, and P1 from Brazil. Based on the reliable information, the vaccines that currently in use are still able to overcome the new virus variants. Hence, the government must catch up with the number of people who are vaccinated, therefore herd immunity can be created immediately,” said Prof. Ari.
In addition, Prof. Ari Fahrial Syam also said it would be important to increase government support for laboratories or research institutions that carry out sequencing to find out the occurrence of virus mutations in Indonesia. By knowing the number and types of virus variants circulating in Indonesia, the government can implement steps to anticipate the wider spread of the virus.
(FKUI Public Relations Office)