Jakarta (ANTARA) - Indonesia and Iran enjoy bilateral collaboration in the health sector, which has included the development of a Robotic Surgery Center since 2021, Deputy Minister of Health Dante Saksono Harbuwono has said.

"Telerobotic surgery technology is not only beneficial for filling the shortage of surgeon specialists, but also eliminating geographical barriers and distance barriers so that specialist doctor services can be more effective and efficient," he observed in Jakarta on Wednesday.

The collaborative project is currently being carried out at Hasan Sadikin Hospital in Bandung and Sardjito Hospital in Yogyakarta.

According to Harbuwono, telerobotic surgery technology is a part of the transformation of the health system in Indonesia and could help ease people’s access to health services.

The cooperation between the two countries in the health sector has been running since 2018, marked by the signing of a health memorandum of understanding (MoU) between the ministers of health of Indonesia and Iran.

The collaboration covers health services, pharmaceutical and medical devices, health research and development, universal health coverage, prevention and control of communicable and non-communicable diseases, traditional medicine, and health emergency response and disaster management.

The development of the Robotic Surgery Center in Indonesia began in 2021 with the locus of the pilot projects being Hasan Sadikin Hospital and Sardjito Hospital.

According to Harbuwono, the technology can help ensure high-quality surgical services, minimize complications after surgery, reduce financial burden, and travel long distances, which is often risky.

"This technology also provides greater surgical accuracy and maneuverability, which will help surgeons, and patients in remote areas will have access to the latest surgical procedures," he said.

Iranian President Seyyed Ebrahim Raisi visited the Bogor Presidential Palace, West Java, on Tuesday (May 23, 2023) to meet with Indonesian President Joko Widodo.

"Regarding the economy, it was agreed that today Indonesia and Iran have signed a preferential trade agreement (PTA); hopefully, it will further increase trade between Indonesia and Iran," said President Joko Widodo in a press conference at Bogor Palace.

Widodo and Raisi also explored business-to-business agreements, investment in the development of the archipelago’s capital, and investment solutions in the oil and gas sector.

Indonesia also expressed the hope that the two nations will cooperate in the fields of research, technology transfer, and assembly of rail transportation equipment.

Several other agreements were reached on trading preference agreements, eradicating the illicit traffic of psychotropic narcotics and their precursors, science and technology and innovation, guarantees for halal products, development of the energy sector, as well as the regulation of pharmaceutical, biological, traditional medicines, cosmetics, and processed food products.

Agreements were also reached on visa exemption for holders of diplomatic and service passports, mutual administrative assistance in the field of customs, trade promotion and cultural exchange programs.

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Translator: Andi Firdaus, Cindy Frishanti Octavia
Editor: Rahmad Nasution
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