President Joko Widodo (Jokowi) on Wednesday, 16 December 2020 announced that covid-19 vaccines will be free of charge for all Indonesians, amending the government’s earlier decision to limit the free vaccination program only for healthcare frontline workers and the poor.
According to President Jokowi, the decision was taken after gathering advice from elements of society and reviewing the budget.
“I can say that the Covid-19 vaccine for the public is free. Once again, it’s free, there’s no charge at all,” said Jokowi during a virtual press statement on Wednesday.
“Remember this. It will be free of charge. There is no reason not to get vaccinated,” the President stated.
Under the government’s vaccination plan, Indonesia aimed to vaccinate 107 million people, or about 67 percent of the country’s population between 18 and 59. Vaccine doses to about 32 million people which later revised to 53 million would be available for free. The government expected the remaining vaccine targets to pay for their doses of vaccine.
In total, Indonesia needs to procure at least 246 million doses of Covid-19 vaccines.
“I have instructed the finance minister to prioritize and reallocate budget from other ministries for this free vaccination program so that there is no reason for the public not to get vaccines,” he said.
The Health Ministry has recommended six vaccines for use in Indonesia, including those produced by Sinovac, Sinopharm, AstraZeneca, Pfizer-BioNtech, Moderna, and Bio Farma.