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AstraZeneca Vaccine is Safe and Effective in Preventing Covid-19

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By: Deka Prawira)*

The use of the AstraZeneca Vaccine was resumed after a temporary delay. The vaccine has received recommendations from the world health agency, WHO. The risk of side effects is also smaller compared to the potential for contracting and the dangers of Covid-19.

After being in doubt, the Astrazeneca vaccine has now been declared safe and halal so that it can be used. Spokesperson for the Covid-19 vaccination of the Ministry of Health (Kemenkes) Siti Nadia Tarmizi said that she welcomed the results of the AstraZeneca vaccine test number CTMAV 547 carried out by the Food and Drug Supervisory Agency (BPOM) together with a number of related agencies.

Siti assessed that the submission process was a manifestation of the government’s caution in completing the Covid-19 vaccine.

Nadia reiterated that the national vaccination program is here to provide protection to the entire community against the threat of COVID-19.

Therefore, the government is trying to present the best quality and effective vaccines against the corona virus.

He also explained that the AstraZeneca vaccine is one of the most widely used vaccines in the world. So it definitely meets the quality requirements and is safe to use.

Previously on May 16, 2021, the government had temporarily suspended the distribution and use of the AstraZeneca vaccine batch number CTMAV 547. This was following an investigation and testing by BPOM on the safety and effectiveness of the vaccine against Covid-19.

This test aims to determine the correlation between the quality of the vaccine product and the reported side effects.

Then, based on the results of the sterility test and abnormal toxicity test conducted at the National Center for Drug and Food Testing Development (PPOMN), BPOM decided that the AstraZeneca vaccine batch number CTMAV 547 had a reported post-immunization co-occurrence (AEFI).

To avoid misinformation, dr. Dirga Sakti Rambe as a vaccinologist said about the importance of the public to know about the better AstraZeneca vaccine.

According to him, the AstraZeneca vaccine is generally a safe and effective vaccine. The AstraZeneca vaccine together with Sinovac and Shinoparm previously received Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) from the Food and Drug Supervisory Agency (BPOM).

Doctor Dirga said it is important for the public to know that the AstraZeneca vaccine is the most widely used vaccine in the world. Where the use of the vaccine has reached tens of millions of doses.

Another thing that the public needs to know is that vaccines that have been granted a permit for widespread use are still being monitored for their use. This process is an ongoing process that prioritizes the precautionary principle so that the vaccines used are always safe in the community.

Of course there will be an evaluation and monitoring process after getting the EUA. Experts, the POM Agency and the Ministry of Health continue to oversee the circulation and use of this vaccine in the community.

Regarding several AEFIs which are still suspected of being related to the AstraZeneca vaccine, dr. Dirga said that the reaction after the vaccine was injected was normal.

This shows that the vaccine works because the vaccine has an antigen substance so it needs an introduction process in the body to form antibodies. Overall, the AEFI on AstraZeneca is still mild and manageable.

He also added that currently the public has heard information about several cases of abnormal blood clotting called thrombosis which is associated with the AstraZeneca vaccine. So far, what is known to the public is that the incidence of thrombosis is very small, only 10 cases out of 1 million people who receive the AstraZeneca vaccine.

This condition can still be treated medically. Experts are currently continuing to study the characteristics of these thrombotic conditions. However, when compared to thrombosis due to Covid-19 infection, the incidence caused by AstraZeneca is very small.

This means that the AstraZeneca vaccine is safe and the benefits far outweigh the possible risks. Moreover, the LPPOM of the Indonesian Ulema Council (MUI) has issued a fatwa that the AstraZeneca vaccine is Halal to be used in an emergency.

Not only in Indonesia, other countries that use AstraZenca, there are many European and Asian countries that have used AstraZeneca and it can be seen that the reports have succeeded in suppressing new cases.

Doctor Dirga also invites the public not to feel afraid and doubtful about the AstraZeneca vaccine or other vaccines used in Indonesia.
After all, vaccines are one of the most important instruments to control the Covid-19 pandemic. So the government needs to continue the vaccination program so that Indonesia can achieve herd immunity and return to normal life.

)* The author is a contributor to the Press Circle and Cikini Students

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