Expanding ART Services through A Collaboration of Public and Private Health Care Facilities

Collaboration Between Infectious Diseases Hospital Prof. Dr. Sulianti Saroso and Private Primary Health Facility, Angsamerah Clinic, for Expanding ART (Antiretroviral Therapy) Service for PLWHA.

Angsamerah has received a special appreciation by the Infectious Disease Hospital Sulianti Saroso (RSPI), delivered by its director, Dr. Rita Rogayah Sp.P(K), for the outstanding performance as a satellite provider of antiretroviral therapy (ART) for people living with HIV and AIDS (PLWHA) since June 2010. The appreciation was given to Angsamerah on the occasion of RSPI’s 22nd anniversary festivities, which took place on Thursday, May 12, 2016. The Angsamerah team feels very grateful and blessed for the trust and support provided by RSPI and the smooth collaboration over the course of these past years.

Previously, RSPI had been supplying antiretroviral drugs to seven satellite healthcare providers in Jakarta. In the meantime, two of the satellites have gained autonomy, namely Puskesmas Koja and Puskesmas Tanjung Priok (Cilincing). Based on years of smooth collaboration, Angsamerah’s sound track record as a satellite provider for ART and its more than 200 patients enrolled in HIV care and treatment, RSPI has now encouraged and recommended Angsamerah to become an independent ART provider. This is also reflected in the following statement from Dr. Adria Rusli Sp.P: “We will help Angsamerah to become an independent ART provider. Because we feel that Angsamerah is definitely ready to provide ART services. The only issue which still needs to be clarified is administrative, namely the registration number for recording and reporting.”

Being aware about society’s need to have better access to HIV care and treatment services coverage, combined with the trust and encouragement from RSPI and in line with Angsamerah’s mission, Angsamerah will be proud and happy to become a healthcare facility providing ART independently, similar like an increasing number of other healthcare services across Indonesia. The process for Angsamerah becoming an independent ART provider is being supported by RSPI and also the DKI-Jakarta Health Office, with the hope that the Angsamerah clinic can soon have/get a registration number. Currently, only hospitals and puskesmas (community health centers) have a registration number within the national system, with private clinics still being excluded. Yet, possessing such a registration number is important for the purpose of monitoring and evaluating a health facility’s logistics, supply and distribution. Moreover, it allows for easier evaluation of a health service’s performance, as well as keeping track of current ART scaling-up efforts in different regions and nationally. Efforts to halt the HIV and AIDS epidemic in Indonesia should not be the responsibility of hospitals and puskesmas only, but we should rather include and acknowledge all healthcare services, including from the private sector. And all healthcare services providing HIV care and treatment services should be supervised by the respective local health offices.

On the occasion of this appreciation we should also remember that the Angsamerah Clinic could start providing ART only thanks to the good intentions of a number of doctors from the RSPI, which back then was headed by Dr. Janto Lingga Sp.P, Chairman of the AIDS working group at the RSPI. The idea developed during a training on clinical care of people living with HIV and AIDS (PLWHA) conducted by the RSPI, which had been attended by the Angsamerah doctors, nurses, and laboratory technicians. Starting out in an informal way, the Angsamerah Clinic subsequently started providing ART at its facility, supervised by the AIDS working group of the RSPI. A couple of months later, in 2011, the partnership between RSPI and Angsamerah as a satellite provider for ART had been formalized through the signing of an MOU.

During the year 2015, the Angsamerah clinics have provided 1475 individuals with voluntary HIV counselling and testing services, of which 105 were diagnosed with HIV. Currently, more than 200 patients access HIV care and Treatment services at Angsamerah each month. Times and again it shows that strategic partnerships can bring benefits to all parties involved.

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