Jakarta. Australian scientist Barry J. Marshall, who won the 2005 Nobel Prize in Physiology together with Robin Warren, says Indonesia should invest in research centers to boost the nation's health care sector.
Marshall visited Jakarta last week together with Bruce Robinson, a senior researcher from the University of Western Australia.
In an interview with the Jakarta Globe, Marshall said Indonesia should develop more research centers to reduce the cost of crucial treatments for patients, such as chemotherapy, and allow for more personalized treatments.
Robinson said he had been working on a personalized cancer treatment by adjusting the medications and treatments to the specific DNA of each patient.
“We are just getting the message out, and being optimistic about this [new kind of treatment], so people can say even in Indonesia we are getting a good value out of the health system here,” said Marshall.
The new treatment can only be offered in Indonesia if there are enough research facilities. According to Marshall, investing in such new institutions would benefit the country in the long run, due to the wide range of health issues to be researched and developed.
According to Robinson, Indonesia has got plenty of human resources in the medical sector, but the infrastructure to produce great scientific research results is lacking.
The two scientists were in Indonesia at the invitation of Australian Embassy and gave lectures at the Eijkman Institute for Molecular Biology, University of Indonesia’s Department of Medicine, as well as the medical department at Pelita Harapan University.