Resource Logo
CDC HIV/AIDS/Viral Hepatitis/STD/TB Prevention News Update

INDONESIA: Indonesia's Hidden Hepatitis C Time Bomb


Jakarta Globe (09.10.2013)

In 2007, Indonesia’s Health Ministry estimated that more than 7 million Indonesians—more than 2 percent of the country’s population—had hepatitis C. Approximately half of hepatitis C-infected people could progress to chronic liver disease, and one-third could develop liver fibrosis or cancer. HIV-infected people who injected drugs were particularly vulnerable, since HIV tripled the risk for liver disease and death. Suhendro Sugiharto, program manager at the Indonesian Drug Users’ Network (PKNI), reported that injection drug users often could not access harm reduction strategies to prevent hepatitis C and recommended hepatitis C treatment. PKNI research with drug-using communities in eight Indonesian cities revealed that nearly two-thirds of drug users received harm reduction services, but half of those accessing harm reduction services never received hepatitis C testing and treatment information. To determine proper hepatitis C treatment, patients needed diagnostic tests that cost up to $580, three times the average Indonesian’s monthly salary. Each of the six hepatitis C genotypes responded differently to treatment. Pharmaceutical companies Merck and Roche held the license to provide hepatitis C treatment in Indonesia and other Southeast Asian countries. PKNI and other international advocates recently demanded that Merck and Roche cut prices to increase access to hepatitis C treatment. The Indonesian government provided some public support for hepatitis C treatment through insurance programs for government employees, employees of some businesses, and low-income individuals. However, most Indonesians either did not know about available programs or did not qualify for these programs. Indonesia’s Minister of Health Nafsiah Mboi announced that National Health Insurance would cover hepatitis C treatment beginning in 2014. The Health Ministry established a national program focused on hepatitis C in 2011 and would begin to implement a national plan sometime between 2015 and 2019.


Copyright © 2013 -CDC Prevention News Update, Publisher. All rights reserved to Information, Inc., Bethesda, MD. The CDC National Center for HIV, STD and TB Prevention provides the following information as a public service only. Providing synopses of key scientific articles and lay media reports on HIV/AIDS, other sexually transmitted diseases and tuberculosis does not constitute CDC endorsement. This daily update also includes information from CDC and other government agencies, such as background on Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report (MMWR) articles, fact sheets, press releases and announcements. Reproduction of this text is encouraged; however, copies may not be sold, and the CDC HIV/STD/TB Prevention News Update should be cited as the source of the information. Contact the sources of the articles abstracted below for full texts of the articles.

Information in this article was accurate in September 11, 2013. The state of the art may have changed since the publication date. This material is designed to support, not replace, the relationship that exists between you and your doctor. Always discuss treatment options with a doctor who specializes in treating HIV.