Limitation Of Practice Sites Is To Protect Doctors And Patients
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The provision that doctor practice license (SIP) can only be issued for working only in three places is intended to ensure that patients would obtain broader medical services. With limited places of practice, doctors will have more opportunities to care for their patients intensively. Therefore, it is expected that malpractice cases due to substandard medical actions by doctors can be reduced.

That was conveyed by the Health Minister, Siti Fadillah Supari, when she gave her testimony in a hearing for the judicial review of Law Number 29 Year 2004 regarding Medical Practice (Medical Practice Law) at the Constitutional Court Building in Jakarta on Wednesday (11/4). “If the doctor rushes to go to another practice location for a tight practice schedule, there may be incidents where a scalpel is left inside or a scissor is stuck,” she said.

A petition for review of several articles in the Medical Practice Law was filed by a number of doctors and a patient who felt that their constitutional rights had been violated by the application of the law. Articles which are claimed to have impaired the constitutional rights of the Petitioners are Article 37 Paragraph (2) which contains the limit of three practice sites for doctors and dentists, and Article 75 Paragraph (1), Article 76, Article 79 Sub-Paragraph a and Article 79 Sub-Paragraph c which impose criminal sanctions on doctors and dentists violating the provision. Due to the threat, medical experts are afraid to take medical actions in the event that an emergency condition suddenly occurs outside his practice locations for the fear of being criminalized. Meanwhile on the other hand, doctors have the moral duty according to their professional oath to help anyone who needs medical help, anytime, anywhere.

In response to the issue, the Minister of Health argued that the inclusion and application of criminal sanctions is intended for law enforcement and an effort to provide protection and legal certainty for health services consumers (the public) and the service provider themselves (doctors and dentists).

Criminal Sanction vs. Administrative Sanction 

A member of the Constitutional Court Panel of Justices, Prof. HAS Natabaya, SH, LLM, requested the government to explain the reason for the application of criminal sanction on violations of the Medical Practice Law provisions which is actually within the scope of administrative law. Constitutional Justice I Dewa Gede Palguna, SH, MH, also questioned the basis for determining criminal sanctions on those violations. Meanwhile, other Constitutional Justice, Maruarar Siahaan, SH also addressed the tendency of over criminalization in the determination of the sanctions.

In relation to those questions, the Chief Justice of the Constitutional Court, Prof. Dr. Jimly Asshiddiqie, SH, requested the Government and the People’s Legislative Assembly to prepare written answers so as to be more comprehensive. Aside from that, the Panel of the Constitutional Justices also requested the People’s Legislative Assembly to provide the minutes of meeting of the People’s Legislative Assembly at the time the Medical Practice Law was formulated as a matter of consideration for subsequent hearings. Several parties related to this case will also be presented and requested to provide their testimony namely Chairperson of the Indonesian Doctors Association (IDI), Indonesian Dentists Association (PDGI), the Medical Profession Council, the Hospitals Association (Persi) and the Indonesian Institute of Health Consumers Protection. (ardli) 

Thursday, April 12, 2007 | 10:34 WIB 254
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