Remarks At The Sanglah Hospital
FRI 12 OCTOBER 2012
Can I say what a delight it is to be here with Ibu Nafsiah, the Minister for Health in this hospital, Sanglah Hospital.
This is the hospital that met the needs of those hurt in the Bali bombings in those first few critical hours. I’ve spoken to a number of the survivors of the Bali bombing who have got very, very powerful memories of being brought to this hospital and their medical needs dealt with in this hospital until they were medically evaced to Australia.
It played a substantial role in assisting Australians and assisting all the victims of the Bali bombings. As a result, a real friendship has begun between this hospital and Australia and I am very proud and pleased that this friendship has helped the hospital develop a new intensive care centre, a top quality burns unit and refurbished the pathology department and the morgue.
I’m also proud that we’ve been able to assist to train medical staff and establish the Australia-Bali Memorial Eye Centre which has performed more than 6000 eye operations including through mobile clinics which reach people in rural areas.
This has been a partnership between governments which has brought more resources to this hospital.
But perhaps even more importantly, it has been a partnership between people. People have been prepared to work together. So since 2003, 41 people from Bali have received scholarships to study medicine or in a health related fields in Australia and I’ve had the opportunity to meet some of them today.
Ninety five Australian volunteers have worked in Bali, 11 of those, mostly nurses right here at Sanglah hospital, and I’ve had the opportunity to meet with two of the volunteers today.
There is a partnership between this hospital and the cranio-facial work that happens in Adelaide and I’ve met the people who drive that today, both Australians and Indonesians and what a wonderful life changing partnership that is.
And this year we commenced a twinning arrangement between Sanglah Hospital and Royal Darwin Hospital and it was my very great pleasure to take President Yudhoyono to Royal Darwin Hospital when he last visited Australia to talk about that twinning arrangement and that partnership.
Today, I’m here to say we want to keep building on this people to people work, we want to keep building on this great partnership for the future.
So, in recognition of the role health facilities around Bali play in meeting the needs of Australians who travel here, I am pleased to announce that Australia will provide 20 medical scholarships to Indonesia annually over three years beginning in 2014. So more of our friends of Indonesia can come and train in Australia.
I am also very pleased to be able to announce today that we will continue to work together with Indonesia on health care, and in particular we will be focused on supporting the primary health care system to ensure that millions of Indonesian men, women and children have free access to quality health care.
We will be devoting a $50 million program to focus on training nurses and midwives, helping the health system plan for where they’re placed and working with national and local health personnel to ensure they get the best results for the money that is being invested in primary health care across Indonesia.
This is another way in which we are working with Indonesia in a partnership for the future.
This new health initiative is going to build on years of successful collaboration between Australia and Indonesia. And, the woman I am standing alongside has been a big driver of that work and collaboration.