When the spike in COVID-19 cases rose in July-August 2021, Bali was one of the provinces with the highest number. Some health facilities have difficulty meeting the needs of medical equipment, both for handling patients and protecting health workers. One example is the need for oxygen. Due to the scarce supply, the need for oxygen was rationed for each health facility. Often, the oxygen rations cannot meet the patient’s needs, which continue to grow every day.
As part of the Covid-19 prevention program, IDEP has conducted a series of medical equipment distributions to several health facilities and communities groups in Bali. The recipients of this medical aid consist of three hospitals, four health centers, one clinic, one PMI service facility, and 11 communities/citizen groups. They are spread over seven regencies/cities such as Gianyar, Karangasem, Badung, Klungkung, Jembrana, Buleleng, and Denpasar.
IDEP carries out this program in collaboration with Save the Children Indonesia and Western Australia Government. The program, which started in November 2021, aims to support the handling of COVID-19, which the Government and all related parties are carrying out. In addition, this program is also intended so that health service providers and vulnerable communities can reduce the risk of being exposed to the coronavirus. Moreover, new variants of this virus continue to emerge, and after Delta, now the Omicron variant is a threat.
The medical supplies distributed are oxygen concentrators, oximeters, oxygen cylinders, N95 masks, medical masks, non-sterile gloves, short-sleeved disposable aprons, head covers, and rapid antigen test packages. These items are targeted to be distributed before the Christmas and New Year holidays to anticipate the mobility of people entering and leaving Bali.
The medical equipment distribution program officially began with a symbolic handover ceremony at Graha Sabha Utama RSUD Sanjiwani, Gianyar. On Wednesday (22/12), the handover was attended by representatives of the Provincial Covid Task Force, the Provincial Health Office, Save the Children Indonesia, and medical aid recipients. In addition to the symbolic handover, the ceremony was also filled with demonstration sessions on how to use medical devices such as oxygen concentrators and oximeters, which community groups or communities would later accept. After that, the present recipients were also invited to exchange stories about the situation faced during the pandemic and what the contribution of medical aid assistance was for each of them.
Even though a symbolic handover marked it, the distribution of medical aids had started the day before. The distribution locations are in Gianyar and Karangasem. In Gianyar, the recipients of medical aid assistance are the Sanjiwani Hospital, Sukawati Health Center, and the Bumi Sehat Clinic. Meanwhile, in Karangasem, the recipients were the Karangasem Hospital and the Kubu Health Center.
The need for oxygen cylinders, PPE, and rapid antigen test kits is often high. But what usually happens is that health facilities do not have sufficient stock. Especially when the spike in cases is at its highest, this is experienced by the Sanjiwani Hospital and the Bumi Sehat Clinic. “Because the need for oxygen was very high at that time (July – August 2021) and so we wouldn’t fight over each other, oxygen was rationed for us every day,” said one representative of the Sanjiwani Hospital. Bumi Sehat Clinic, which focuses on providing delivery services, is almost the same. With the help of this medical device, they feel that it will be more helpful to give maximum service to patients who give birth.
Although it is a race against time, the distribution of medical equipment will continue to be carried out to several health facilities and community groups/citizens. Some health facilities that will receive medical aid assistance are Bali Mandara Hospital in Denpasar and Nusa Penida 1 Health Center, and Nusa Penida 3 Health Center in Klungkung Regency. In addition, the other recipients are 11 groups/communities involved in efforts to overcome Covid-19 and community empowerment activities. In Karangasem, there is the East Bali Poverty Project (EBPP). In Denpasar, there are the Indonesian Red Cross (PMI), the Humanity Care Foundation (YPK), the Bali Kwarda Scouts, the Bali Volunteer Forum, and the Bali Wapena Forum. In Badung, there are the Legal Aid Institute (LBH) Apik Bali and Balawista Kuta. In Jembrana, there is a Base Bali community. Meanwhile, in Buleleng, there are the Pilang Foundation and the Suka Makmur Farmers Union (SPSM). (Ed)