KORNELIUS Kodi Mete has only been chief of the East Nusa Tenggara (NTT) health department for the last four months, but like his predecessor, he is determined to continue improving the health care system in the province through various programs. He believes that many people in NTT today are more aware of their health, so that it is now up to the government to provide them with the good service they seek.
But improvement in the system needs a great deal of effort, not only from public institutions, but in cooperation with civil society organizations. Thus, Kornelius welcomes the initiatives from the Australia Indonesia Partnership for Health Systems Strengthening (AIPHSS) and the Health Ministry’s offer of assistance to local governments. This includes perfecting the referral system, facilitating accreditation for community health centers (Puskesmas) and long distance learning for nurses and midwives.
Kornelius also says that the province is now putting a lot more effort in improving the health care system because of recent developments with regards to the National Health Insurance ( JKN) and the Social Security Management Board (BPJS). “Now we really must improve our system,” he said. Kornelius spoke to Tempo English reporter Amanda Siddharta on the province’s effort to provide better public medical service.
Why are health care program in several regencies in NTT running so well?
I think because of the determination of the doctors, nurses and staff in the primary level to provide health care services. They also feel encouraged by our commitment to improve the local healthcare system, and so it became a good synergy.
The AIPHSS provides assistance to several regencies such as East Flores and North Central Timor. Are these regencies more successful compared to others?
All regencies have the same passion (to improve) In accordance with the regional autonomy law, all health units in regencies are free to devise their own programs. From the provincial government side, we provide all health oices in the regencies, room for advocacy with their respective regents, to devise their own programs.
Other than benefitting from the BPJS system, are there any other incentives for Puskesmas to seek accreditation?
It is because of the BPJS that we started to push the to intensify their efforts. The provincial health office is helping the Puskesmas to prepare for their accreditation, by evaluating the medical staff and healthcare facilities.
What is the biggest challenge: the lack of competent medical staff, or inadequate facility?
Both. We don’t have enough qualified medical staff, and we need people who are skilled and passionate about providing services to the people. Meanwhile, we continue to improve the facilities and infrastructure. We can’t have enough skilled manpower with- out good infrastructure, and vice versa.
Do you have a target date to complete accreditation of all Puskesmas and make sure all medical staff have at least a D3 certificate?
I hope all 345 Puskesmas at NTT will get their accreditation by this year. Even if we face challenges along the way, we will try to overcome them and complete everything at least by 2017, before the regulation takes effect. We will also help the nurses and midwives who graduated from vocational school (to get their certification) so they can continue their work.
Will the government continue to help existing program even after oganizations like the AIPHSSS are no longer around?
Of course, we might have limitations but we will try to make it work within our capability.
How much has the provincial government allocated for the improvement of health care and its sustainability?
We have more than 12 percent of the total regional budget (APBD) for healthcare. But for the moment we spend ore for curative healthcare. In the future we will strive for more preventive (program) as well.
Photos by Amanda Siddharta (TEMPO)
Source: Tempo English Magazine