The answer to the title above raised in an online seminar titled “Is Indonesian Technology Ready to Encounter Covid-19?” organized by the UGM Professor Council (DGB) on Friday (5/22). Indonesian technology had considered themselves as having well-readiness in facing Covid-19.
In the seminar, three main speakers were the Dean of the UGM Faculty of Pharmacy, Prof. Agung Endro Nugroho, Head of the UGM Biotechnology Study Center, Pro. Siti Subandiyah, and Lecturer of Faculty of Engineering UGM, Dr. Andhika Widyaparaga.
Agung Endro Nugroho said that Indonesian technology was ready to face Covid-19 by considering a few notes.
First, accelerate the downstream of products produced by researchers from various research institutions, universities, and others. He gave an example, UGM currently has provided several kinds of innovations in medical devices, medicines, herbs, and supplements to support the handling of Covid-19. Some of them are in the form of innovative products that are still in the way of prototypes. Others are products that have been independently produced/are widely used but do not yet have a production permit/distribution permit.
Regarding this distribution permit, he said that the Ministry of Health had made efforts to accelerate the distribution of licenses for domestic products for medical devices and household health supplies (PKRT) needed through the One Day Service mechanism. This action proposed to accelerate the handling of Covid-19 in the country.
The next step for Indonesian technology to be ready to face Covid-19 is to optimize the role of higher education elements in the upstream and downstream stages to strengthen the connections between these elements.
“Next, strengthen the penta helical concept (government, community, academics, private sector, and media). All components must have the spirit and harmony in optimizing the technological innovations produced, “he explained.
Andhika Widyaparaga also conveyed the same thing. According to him, collaboration and cooperation are essential keywords that will support the success of the development of medical devices in Indonesia.
“When the current situation is all must work together. Must be sincere, do not need to come forward and be praised by people because the important thing is that joint efforts help in overcoming existing problems,” he explained.
As is known, as much as 90 percent of Indonesia’s medical devices are imported. Indonesia has only 10 percent of domestic medical devices.
He said he had an excellent opportunity to develop medical devices. The medical device industry is one of the mainstays in the National National Industry Building based on RIPIN 2015-2035. Therefore in the future, there needs to be a sustainable program.
“So why do you have to develop the national medical equipment industry? In addition to the great demand for medical equipment, the availability of infrastructure and human resources is quite adequate and relatively inexpensive,” he said.
Siti Subandiyah added that in handling Covid-19, it was necessary to eliminate sectoral and individual egos because this becomes one obstacle not only in dealing with Covid-19 but also various other things.
“We have a thick sectoral ego and individual ego, and it applies in the development of biotechnology research,” she moaned.
Meanwhile, biotechnology is a multidisciplinary science that needs collaboration in it. Because without cooperation, it will hamper the development of Indonesian biotechnology.
Another problem is the lack of facilities and infrastructure in biotechnology research. Besides, there are still very few innovations in the field of biotechnology in the country. If there are no wills for researchers to develop the country’s change, it can make us all retarded further behind the other countries.
“However, there is an opportunity in the development of biotechnology research in Indonesia, which is we still have the knowledge and skills,” he explained.
Translator: Natasa A