28 July 2023

On 11 July 2023, the Indonesia Parliament passed the country’s Health Bill. The legislation seeks to streamline bureaucratic procedures relating to a physician’s route to specialist, introduces regulations for the collection of biomedical and genomic data for processing overseas, and grants permission for foreign doctors to practice in Indonesia.

The Health Bill’s wide-ranging provisions are seen as necessary to address long term strain on Indonesia’s health services. Delays in treatment has affected life expectancy and there is a dearth of doctors in Indonesia’s more remote areas.

The Health Bill stipulates that foreign doctors must pass a competence evaluation in order to receive a licence to practice in Indonesia. There are exceptions to this rule, with foreign specialists that have practiced overseas for five years or more or who are considered experts in their field exempt from the evaluation requirement. Foreign doctors or specialists practising in Indonesia must also engage in mandatory programmes involving the transfer of technology and sharing of knowledge.

The Health Bill also regulates the collection and sharing of biomedical and genomic data for processing overseas for the first time. The Bill sets out procedure to comply with and approvals to obtain prior to processing such data overseas.

The new Health Bill amends the 2004 Medical Law, the 2009 Health Law, the 2009 Hospitals Law and other laws on physicians, dentists, nurses and midwives.