The potential impact of COVID-19 pandemic on the immunization performance in Indonesia


As a country with the highest death toll due to COVID-19 in Southeast Asia [1], the rapidly escalating health crisis has prompted the government of Indonesia to provide against the worst scenario for the impact of this pandemic through pharmacological and non-pharmacological interventions. Health crises and emergencies have been omnipresent and habitually unpredictable in duration and location. With increasing awareness of stakeholders and communities, responses to this pandemic situation should be more systematic and well-organized with adequate timing. Apart from mitigating the pandemic, maintaining immunization program performance is a critical issue to prevent further outbreaks of vaccine-preventable diseases. Routine immunization programs should be reinstated as soon as conditions stabilize, and may be the major indication of a rehabilitating health system in a post-crisis context. To support the rehabilitation process, well-developed communication strategies and approaches are required to inform stakeholders, and the broader society about the potential impacts of COVID-19 pandemic and specific mitigation strategies on the continuity and performance of the immunization program.