In this new law, professional organizations will still exist. It is just not written in the law
Jakarta (ANTARA) - Indonesian Health Minister Budi Gunadi Sadikin has assured that the Health Law will not eliminate the role and existence of health professional organizations.

"In this new law, professional organizations will still exist. It is just not written in the law," Sadikin clarified in Jakarta on Friday.

Regarding the response of the Indonesian Medical Association (IDI) and four other associations who sought a review of the ratification of the Health Law on July 11, the minister said that IDI, as a professional organization that oversees many groups in the health sector, will not be abolished under the law.

Its existence and role will be recognized equally, just like for other unionized professional organizations, he explained.

According to him, IDI's regulatory function will be returned to the government, according to the basic rules that are already in effect.

Sadikin said that the Health Law highlights the recommendation to abolish the doctor's practice license (SIP), which, based on reports from young doctors, makes it difficult for them to obtain specialist degrees.

The minister informed that the government took this into consideration after hearing inputs from experts who are members of professional organizations. Besides being difficult to obtain, the SIP is also expensive.

He expressed regret that the problem has occurred at a time when Indonesia is facing a severe shortage of specialist doctors across regions. In fact, the uneven distribution of specialist doctors is still a serious challenge to the development of the health system in Indonesia.

However, he said that his ministry will respect the steps taken by IDI to convey its opinion.

"I appreciate them. It is still part of democracy. However, after hearing input from young doctors, they have difficulty going to specialist schools. It is very difficult and expensive," he added.

On July 12, the executive board of the Indonesian Medical Association (PB-IDI) and four professional organizations attempted to initiate legal steps by seeking a review of the Health Law by the Constitutional Court (MK).

"IDI, together with four professional organizations, will prepare legal act as part of our duty as a law-abiding society to submit a judicial review," PB-IDI chairperson Adib Khumaidi said on Wednesday.

According to him, the Health Law is legally flawed because it has been drafted in a rush, lacks transparency, and has been formulated without considering the aspirations of all groups, including health professionals.

Apart from that, there are still many substances in the Health Law that do not fulfill the health interests of the Indonesian people, he added.

IDI also highlighted the revocation of nine old laws that were finalized in the Health Omnibus Law within a period of six months.

He complained about the loss of mandatory spending in the Health Law as a state commitment at the central and regional government levels.

Khumaidi said the decision has consequences for the privatization of the commercial health sector through foreign loans.

"Through loans, the privatization of the health sector, commercialization, and health business will have consequences for the health resilience of the Indonesian nation," he added.

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Translator: Hreeloita Dharma S, Resinta S
Editor: Sri Haryati
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