16 March 2023

PT Kalbe Farma Tbk through PT Forsta Kalmedic Global held a seminar related to National Health Security, as a concern for the medical device industry, which until now is still dominated by imports. The independence of the health industry in Indonesia is not only the duty of the government, but also the duty of the health industry players. Kalbe through PT Forsta Kalmedic Global also contributes to encouraging the independence of the health industry by developing surgical thread products.

"Our dependence on imports, both medicinal raw materials and medical devices, we must slowly reduce. As part of its support for the government, Kalbe continues to innovate to be able to produce drugs and medical devices with a high TKDN (Domestic Component Level) according to the standards set by the government," said President Commissioner of PT Kalbe Farma Tbk, Irawati Setiady, in the agenda of the National Support Seminar. National Health Industry Resilience, Kalbe Develops Surgical Thread Products.

Based on data from the Ministry of Health, the number of domestic alkes distribution permits in 2022 increased 2.3 times compared to 2019, namely 5,427 in 2019, to 12,524 in 2022. Then, local medical device transactions in the e-catalogue in 2022 increased 2.5 times more than in 2019-2021. In 2019-2021 it will be 12 percent, while in 2022 it will be 30 percent.

"We are trying to continuously monitor and review its use, and there is a decision by the Minister of Health to use domestic production. We carry out various business matching activities eight times a year, we want to understand the users, both in terms of quality, how to use it, and how the post marketing service is," said the Director General of Pharmaceuticals and Medical Devices, Ministry of Health of the Republic of Indonesia, Dra. Lucia Rizka Andalucia.

The Ministry of Industry of the Republic of Indonesia has also proactively encouraged the implementation of the Increasing Use of Domestic Products program. The Ministry of Industry is pursuing a strategy in developing the medical device industry, namely simplifying licensing systems and processes, integrated data and information systems for the medical equipment industry, using domestic products through e-catalogues, encouraging and developing medical equipment R&D, and facilitating the development of the medical equipment industry.

"Currently, the national pharmaceutical industry controls the supply of drug products for around 89 percent by volume, with around 35 percent idle production capacity. However, more than 90 percent of the raw materials for drugs (active and auxiliary) used by the national pharmaceutical industry are still imported. Several drugs that still need to be imported include drugs that are still under patent, various types of biological products, and drugs with specific dosage forms such as aerosol inhalers or insulin pens," said Minister Expert Staff, Ministry of Industry of the Republic of Indonesia, Andi Rizaldi .

Meanwhile, the role of banking in supporting the health industry is currently still very minimal and needs to be continuously improved. Because, considering the health industry is needed by the wider community. "LPS (Deposit Guarantee Agency) is participating in supporting healthy banking conditions so that it can continue to support the health industry which will eventually have an impact on the country's economy," said Member of the Board of Commissioners/ Chief Executive of LPS, Lana Soelistianingsih.

"President Jokowi has given directions at the opening of the March 15 business meeting, that 95 percent of the budget ceiling for goods and services must be purchased for domestic products. Currently there are still 15.4 T of imported products in medical equipment and 3.42 T of imported drug products that still need to be our concern so they can be transferred to domestic products," added the Deputy for Coordination of Tourism and Creative Economy, Coordinating Ministry for Maritime Affairs and Investment of the Republic of Indonesia, Odo R.M. Manuhutu.

In line with President Joko Widodo's directives, PT Kalbe Farma Tbk is also contributing to the commitment to nourish the nation by continuing to innovate. R&D innovation and Kalbe's technology transfer through multi-parties collaboration, as well as increasing human resource competence and production through technology transfer and investment in Indonesia. Kalbe also supports domestic medical equipment production with local content through surgical thread products.

"Kalbe through its subsidiary PT Kalbio Global Medika has been producing biological drug raw materials for the treatment of anemia, cancer, diabetes and others; PT Global Oncolab Farma already produces cancer drugs; PT Finusol Prima is already producing intravenous fluids; PT Forsta Kalmedic Global has produced surgical sutures and is preparing to produce other consumables," said President Director of PT Kalbe Farma Tbk, Vidjongtius.

As Vidjongtius concluded, “As a support for the health independence in Indonesia, especially health equipment, Kalbe, and its subsidiary PT Forsta Kalmedic Global has developed and produced a surgical suture technology domestically with over 40 percent of TKDN and will be increased up to 60 percent. Forsta itself has currently obtained a production certificate, a Good Manufacturing Practice for Medical Device (CPAKB) certificate, an ISO 13485 certificate, and a halal certificate.

The commercial production of Elva sutures has been available since December of 2021 with Elvalene, a non-absorbable polypropylene synthetic suture, as its first product. In 2022, Elvalene has been listed in the e-catalog and tested in several teaching hospitals on Java Island. There are currently a complete set of suture portfolios in Forsta that are both synthetic and natural, such as Elvadio, Elvacryl, Elvamono, Elvarapid, Elvachromic, and Elvaplain.