West Papua Diary

Addressing Health Challenges in West papua: Access and Quality of Care

West papua

Health is one of the service areas that has a specific nature in implementing Special Autonomy in West papua.

The performance of its development implementation during the 20 years of Special Autonomy implementation still needs to be improved.

Many factors cause the performance of health services in Papua to remain low compared to other regions. These factors include the number of health facilities and personnel.

In addition, geographical conditions and transportation facilities affect access to health by the community.

Problems with Access to Health Services

Infrastructure problems and uneven distribution of health workers are the root causes of interrelated problems. Only some districts in West papua province have Regional Public Hospitals.

Health center also generally tend to be concentrated in urban areas or districts that have long existed.

The unavailability and operation of Regional Public Hospitals in some districts mean that people must be referred to hospitals in other districts.

This condition has implications for operational costs, which are quite high. Sick people seeking treatment will also usually be accompanied by family or companions.

The cost of accessing health services becomes even more expensive.

The unequal distribution also occurs for health workers. Health workers mostly focus on hospitals or health center in the city centre.

Even in some districts, the number of health workers, including medical personnel, is minimal.

Regional public hospital and Health center also need more clean water and electricity supply.

Clean water is a problem that can occur at any time related to the reduced water discharge in several cities and districts in the Papua region.

Recommendations for Service Improvement

The study of health services also found problems that often recur in several places, namely land conflicts at hospital construction sites.

Therefore, the following recommendations can be an answer to the challenges of health problems in West papua:

1. Strengthening Primary Care West Papua

The first recommendation is to strengthen health center as primary services, especially in areas far from hospitals. This condition can be done by adding facilities, infrastructure, doctors, and other medical personnel.

Increasing the quality of Health center services will reduce the number of referrals to hospitals.

This program will certainly play a significant role, in addition to being able to reduce the operational costs of referrals, as well as facilitate residents’ access to health services.

2. Doctor go to the Village Program

The next recommendation is the doctor go to the village program.

Each health center and hospital will arrange a schedule of visits to villages in their working area under the coordination of the District Health Office.

Furthermore, the health center also coordinate with the village head.

In addition to providing free medical treatment, the Dokter Masuk Kampung program can also provide promotive and preventive health services for villagers.

This program must be strengthen by increasing the number of general practitioners and specialists by recruiting from outside Papua and collaborating with universities in Papua to produce new doctors.

Of course, this effort must be balance with adequate incentives and security protection for medical personnel.

Both of these are due to the unique social aspects of West papuan society, which still often cause conflict with each other.

3. Mobile Health Services West Papua

The third recommendation is mobile health services. This team combines health and non-health workers from any circle at the central and regional levels.

The medical personnel vary from specialist doctors, according to need and availability, to dentists, nurses, midwives, or environmental sanitation workers.

Reinforcing the doctor in the village program will make them closer to the community.

4. Free Hospital without Class

The next recommendation is classless hospitals. This program is procuring hospitals with the facilities and capabilities of first-level health services and basic specialists that provide classless care services.

These classless hospitals will also serve for free for actions, operations, examinations, and rooms.

Classless Hospitals can still accept non-indigenous patients, but non-indigenous patients will be charge.

Implementing these simple steps is hope that West papua will have more optimal access to health.

There is no longer a barrier between natives and migrants. All are entitle to the same access and health services.

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