HEALTHCARE | Staff Reporter, Indonesia

Indonesia urged to strengthen medical devices sector

The country has struggled amidst shortages in protective gear and hospital beds.

Indonesia has been urged to turn the pandemic crisis into an opportunity, and create strategies to strengthen its medical device sector amidst weaknesses in the country's healthcare infrastructure, according to a report from GlobalData.

They noted that a lack of adequate healthcare infrastructure and dependency on other countries for medical supplies has made it difficult for Indonesia to tackle the COVID-19 pandemic effectively.

“The COVID-19 crisis is a lesson to Indonesia and the government should now work towards encouraging domestic manufacturing of medical devices and foreign investments to expand its medical device sector," said GlobalData's medical devices analyst Pratibha Thammanabhatla.

Through this, not only would the country be able to prepare for any health emergencies, but also ramp up foreign investments, job opportunities, open up new markets and create competences, Thammanabhatla added.

The report lauded the country's efforts to contain the spread of the virus by eliminating price disparities through setting price ceiling for COVID-19 tests. The country aimed to produce 70% of its medical supplies domestically.

A shortage of medical staff, protective gear and hospital beds is pushing the country to use digital healthcare as one of its weapons to fight the virus, GlobalData noted. As a result, the popularity of telehealth firms such as Alodokter, Halodoc and GrabHealth has skyrocketed.

This is expected to become a new norm after the pandemic, further accelerating its thriving health care market.

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