Fri, 28 Mar 2003

Bitter experience at TNI clinic

As a civil servant in the Indonesian Army, I exercised my right to free family medical services for my ailing child on March 14, 2003. It was a bitter experience, as we were, in effect, rejected at the Jakarta military health facility's Ridwan Maureksa Hospital.

We arrived at the hospital at about 8 p.m. I was told by the intensive care unit (ICU) officer that since it was my third child, I was not entitled to free health care. I urged that my child be treated, even though I did not meet the relevant criteria, but the officer kept asking me to show case treatment documents, which I had not brought along.

After my persistent request, my almost unconscious child was examined but we were told to go home as there was nothing serious. I took the doctor's prescription to the facility's dispensary and was told to collect the medicine free of charge. A physician asked me to stay but I decided to leave that very night.

I took my child to Almustajam Hospital in Bekasi instead, where the ICU doctor in charge diagnosed the ailment as typhoid, requiring inpatient treatment. After four days of medical care, at reasonable cost, my child recovered.

SARTI Bekasi, West Java