20 April 2018

RSA dr. Lie Dharmawan’s first medical service in 2018 on Kisar Island (April 12-17, 2018)


Floating Hospital (RSA) dr. Lie Dharmawan returned to serve the people of Indonesia in 2018. The first medical service of 2018 was held on Kisar Island, Southwest Maluku Regency, Maluku Province. Kisar Island is one of Indonesia’s outermost islands directly facing Timor Leste. Approximately 17,000 people live on this island with an area of 81.83 KmĀ².

doctorSHARE deployed 15 volunteers consisting of 13 medical volunteers and two non-medical volunteers. Volunteers were divided into two departure teams, one team entered Kisar Island through Kupang, East Nusa Tenggara and the other team entered through Ambon, Maluku. The division of these teams was done due to the limited access to Kisar Island. There is only Susi Air with a Cessna aircraft with a capacity of 11 people.

General medical treatment started the series of medical services on Kisar Island on Friday (4/13). Based on the data from the Deputy Field Coordinator of Kisar Medical Services, Dr. Marselina Mieke, there were 178 patients who received general treatment. Minor surgery was held the next day (14/4) for the next three days at the Dr. Lie Dharmawan Hospital anchored at Kisar Harbor. The number of minor surgery patients was 18.

Difficult transportation access

The difficulty of transportation access to Kisar Island was felt by the doctorSHARE volunteer team. When conducting a survey before medical activities, two survey teams had difficulty finding airplane tickets because the sales were still manual. As a result, when they arrived in Ambon, the survey team did not get tickets and had to fly the next day. Similarly, in Kisar, the flight to Kupang was canceled and diverted to the next day.

As we approached the medical services, the team found it difficult to find flights. Flights were only available twice a week. The other alternative was to use a ship that took almost two days to travel. The pioneer ship departed from Ambon on Monday morning and arrived in Kisar on Wednesday morning. Time efficiency is the reason why the team chose the air route.

As explained earlier, the volunteers were divided into two teams. The team through Kupang numbered eight people and seven people through Ambon. One day before departure to Kisar, the airline canceled the flight to Kisar. One of the officers explained that the only plane to Kisar was damaged and had to wait for spare parts from Jakarta.

The team from Ambon waited two days for flight certainty with no result. Various alternatives were sought in order to arrive on Kisar Island, but to no avail. Finally, the team from Ambon returned to Jakarta. Medical services on Kisar Island continued with a team of eight people from Kupang. Medical assistance from Wonreli Kisar Health Center helped cover the shortage of personnel during the medical service.