Transition from Pandemic to Endemic Not Decided by One Country, Minister Says
Transition from pandemic to endemic cannot be decided only by a country and must be coordinated with the World Health Organization (WHO), Minister of Health Budi Gunadi Sadikin has said.
“This is a global pandemic, Indonesia cannot make decisions on its own to declare it as endemic,” said Budi in a statement at the Presidential Office, Jakarta, after attending a Limited Meeting, Tuesday (05/31).
The Minister explained that there are a number of considerations in deciding the transition from a pandemic to endemic, one of which is public awareness in implementing health protocols. He said that the Government would gradually transfer the responsibility for maintaining health protocols to each individual.
“If the public already understand and well educated to follow the health protocols as it should be, as well as already know what to do to handle the virus, these are the characteristics of a disease that has become endemic,” he said.
In addition, Budi also mentioned three community transmission factors that must be fulfilled for three consecutive months before deciding the transition from pandemic to endemic.
“The WHO rule for community transmission consists of three factors: the number of cases per 100,000; the number of hospitalizations per 100,000; the number of deaths per 100,000 which is categorized at Level 1 for three consecutive months,” he said.
Furthermore, he suggested that the decision to transition from pandemic to endemic could be made if the second dose of vaccination has reached 70 percent and the rate of transmission or effective reproduction is below 1.
“Other than being at Level 1 for three months in a row, other factors are the reproduction rate is below 1 for three months in a row, and the vaccination rate is above 70 percent for the second dose. That’s what we consider from the health sector to make a transition from pandemic to endemic,” said Budi.
Moreover, he said that the transition is not only based on considerations of the health sector, but also economic, social and political sectors.
“It’s not only 100 percent health considerations. There are also economic considerations, social considerations, and political considerations, namely the Head of State at the state level, or group of Heads of State at the global level,” he remarked. (MAY/UN) (EST/MMB)