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Bali Pushing Ahead with Public Health Plan

30,000 Mandara Medical Health Cards to Be Issued to Needy Balinese Families.

(9/20/2010) According to Beritabali.com, the Bali health service is moving ahead with plans to issue Mandara Health Cards (JKBM) that will entitle their bearers to free medical service in Bali, particularly for the poor who seek treatment at local health centers (PUSKESMAS) or public hospitals.

The new JKBM Cards, when in full operation, will enable to poor to access health care by only showing the card at the time of treatment. Currently, indigent Balinese seeking medical care must undergo a bureaucratic process requiring the presentation of an identity card (KTP), a poverty declaration (surat miskin) issued by their village chief, and a letter of recommendation from a community health center (Puskesmas) for those patients seeking care from a public hospital.

The head of the Bali health service, Dr. Nyoman Sutedja, said some 30,000 new JKBM Cards would be phased in over time issued by regencies and municipalities in Bali.

Sutedja said the plan was to eventually issue 500,000 JKBM Cards to the head of poor families in Bali.