History of medicine in Indonesia is characterized by the presence of structural contestation between the 'social doctors’ and 'economic doctors'. On the one hand, Indonesian doctors became the pioneer of humanitarian movements at a certain time, even manifested as designer of national values. On the other side, these doctors become an integral part of the capitalization process that leads to economic impoverishment.
"This is reflected, for example, in the high cost of health care and the virtual discontinuation of medical education as a variable function of social mobility in recent years because of the high cost of medical education in Indonesia," said a History lecturer of the Faculty of Cultural Science, Prof. Dr. Bambang Purwanto, M.A., in the 1st Congress of Indonesia Medicine History Association (PERSEKIN), Saturday (26/11) in the Faculty of Medicine. The Congress took place from November 25-27th 2011.
Bambang said the ideals of 'social doctors' that is mandated by Indonesia's independence and the constitution only became a personal trend and not something that should apply to everyone. Consequently, a variety of health problems in the Indonesian society is one of them is actually caused by ideological and cultural values that exist among doctors and the medical world that is more economically oriented.
"The situation worsened when the country continues to allow it all and forgets about its function in accordance with the constitutional mandate," said Bambang.
Speaking about the history of medicine, it should include health history in a broad sense, namely to put medicine activity as its core, but not the only one. The history of medicine will have many dimensions, whether social, political, economic, technological, or cultural.
Thus, based on such mindset, the first strategy to be considered in Indonesian medical history learning is the necessity to have clear idea about to whom and what the purpose of the teaching. Clarity is needed to define the history of medicine and to determine what materials that will be provided to the learners. The next strategy is to divide the points of learning in certain interlinked themes and to determine the approach underlying the learning points.
"At this last level, history of disease and its treatment will be something that takes precedence over other aspects," he said.
Earlier, Committee Chairman of the 1st PERSEKIN Congress, Prof.Dr. dr. Sutaryo, SP.A (K) also saw the medical profession is currently affected by the wave of globalization, as a continuation of modern capitalism. Medical profession is more likely to be positioned and viewed as an economic commodity, not only by the doctors themselves, but also by the health institutions, foundations, and even the states.
"This is worrying given that the medical profession is noble and honorable. The presence of PERSEKIN is expected to help the construction of doctors and the medical profession character back to its nature," said Sutaryo.
The 1st PERSEKIN Congress is attended by historians, anthropologists, sociologists, physicians, residents, teachers, history community and students.