Bali (ANTARA) - The Indonesian Health Ministry has teamed up with Starlink for the provision of fast internet access to all health centers in remote areas, borders, and islands.

"The presence of Starlink is expected to improve the quality of health services throughout Indonesia, with its ability to reach wider community health centers in areas with geographical challenges," the ministry's Head of Communication and Public Service Bureau, Siti Nadia Tarmizi, noted in a statement from her office on Monday.

This collaboration was carried out in a trial at the Sumerta Kelod Community Health Center (Pustu) in Denpasar on Sunday (May 19). The trial was also conducted at the Bungbungan Community Health Center (Pustu), Klungkung, which has limited internet access.

"The Tabarfane Community Health Center in the Aru Islands, Maluku, which previously did not have internet access, also became a trial location and was connected online using the Starlink network," Tarmizi added.

In this agenda, Health Minister Budi Gunadi Sadikin noted that the cooperation with Starlink was important to support the progress of services, especially community health centers in remote places without internet access.

“Of the 10 thousand community health centers in Indonesia, around 745 do not have internet access and 1,475 have limited internet access. All of them are spread across seven thousand islands in Indonesia," he remarked.

Tarmizi explained that the costs for subscribing to Starlink for Indonesia's community health centers were covered from the Health Operational Assistance (BOK) budget under the management of the Special Allocation Fund (DAK) from the central government to regional governments.

She noted that increasing internet connectivity could open up better access to health services and facilitate access to communication between regions, resulting in real-time case reporting from health service facilities.

Elon Musk, the owner of SpaceX that operates Starlink, remarked that Starlink would help several Indonesians to get adequate internet access.

“I am very passionate about bringing internet connectivity to places with low internet access. We can learn many things with the help of the internet," Musk stated at the inauguration agenda.

Apart from Indonesia, health care facilities in the Philippines, Rwanda, Mozambique, and Nigeria are also supported by Starlink.

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Translator: Andi Firdaus, Resinta Sulistiyandari
Editor: Azis Kurmala
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