Indonesia’s healthcare market expenditure is predicted to reach US$60.6 billion in 2018 with a growth of 14.9 percent over the 2012-2018 period. Despite this high growth, there are still many healthcare challenges in Indonesia.
Healthcare Challenges in Indonesia: An Introduction to the Market
Overall, Indonesia still has poor sanitation. It is difficult to obtain clean water outside of big cities, therefore, diarrhea, gastroenteritis, and contagious diseases such as typhoid, paratyphoid fever, dengue fever, and malaria are still widespread. In addition, according to World Trade Organization, about 70% of the men over age 20 in Indonesia are smokers, which leads to increases in non-communicable diseases such as cancer, stroke, heart disease, and diabetes, and generates the need for chronic disease related products.
According to Cekindo Business International, all these factors increase public demand for healthcare services and some sectors (Food Supplements, Medical Devices, Pharmaceuticals) in the next few years will present opportunities for developing the healthcare industry, particularly for private hospitals. One of the biggest challenges is still the distribution of resources, which is currently uneven. Hospitals, doctors, the entire healthcare infrastructure is unevenly distributed.
Another big challenge for Indonesia is national health care insurance, which the Indonesian government plans to roll out for all of its 240 million citizens at the beginning of 2014. Around 60 percent of Indonesians are already covered by some form of insurance, but by 2019 that net will widen, giving all Indonesians free access to community healthcare centers and government hospitals.
The government wants to kick-start the plan that will be funded in part by the government, employers, and employee contributions. The country’s doctor-to-patient ratio was only 3 doctors per 10,000 people, much less than Malaysia, which has 9 doctors for every 10,000 people, or Cuba, which has 64 doctors for 10,000 people. Indonesia currently has around 73 medical facilities across the country, but still lacks doctors, particularly specialists.
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