Mobile Telemedicine Project in Indonesia

This recently completed project aimed to develop a mobile telemedicine system in Indonesia using existing Internet communication technology. This system will allow remote patients to receive a routine check-up using a mobile phone and local hospitals to respond faster by being able to contact specialists in spite of geographic barriers.

Development of ICT-Based Mobile Telemedicine System with Multi-Communication Links for Urban and Rural Areas in Indonesia

The objective of this project is to develop a tested, working mobile telemedicine system prototype.

Research context
This project aims to develop an information and communications technology (ICT)-based mobile
telemedicine system with multi-communication links for urban and rural areas in Indonesia. The project
uses existing Internet communication technology to develop a prototype telemedicine system that can
be easily moved from one place to another. The telemedicine application is focused on diagnostics,
consultation, and recording and reporting patient’s information. The system can also be used for other
health care service applications and is considered to be particularly useful in many remote areas in

Target beneficiaries
Patients who live far away from a hospital can be given a routine check-up by using the mobile phone.
Local hospitals with limited human resources benefit as the system provides a faster response to critical
medical care and contact with specialists in spite of geographic barriers. The programme for reducing
maternal mortality rate and improving mother and child health benefits local authorities that provide
these services.

A tested, working model of an ICT-Based Mobile Telemedicine System. The system is expected to be used for community health care and can be implemented easily in emergency situations.

Research results and outcomes
The project began by conducting several field surveys in the implementation area of Sukabumi, West
Java. The target area covers about 4,248 square kilometres and has a population of about 2.3 million
people. The altitude varies within the range of from sea level to nearly 3,000 metres. The topography
consists of highlands, hills and coasts. Three hospitals and 71 community health centres serve the local
population. The project has also completed field surveys on the quality of the existing communication
signals in about 35 locations in Sukabumi area. The main challenge the project identified for its
implementation is the difficult topography and availability of communication infrastructure.

Based on the results of these surveys the project has moved forward with design system, and a number
of protocols, applications, software and hardware components have been completed. These include: the
protocol design of the teleconsultation and telediagnosis applications; preliminary software design and
schematic communication links selection; the first prototype of the medical information concentrator
display software; and the hardware design and implementation of a blood pressure and foetal heart rate
pilot interface. A number of activities are currently in progress including: development of
electrocardiogram (ECG) interface; improvement of the communication links selection software; and
improvements on the patient and hospital information systems, and the telediagnosis and
teleconsultation software.

The team notes that the project is challenging. The system is relatively complex as it involves combining
a number of technologies and disciplines, such as communications, computers, sensors, instrumentation,
medical, electronics and other resources.

The project has a highly participatory development structure. Participants include the Director and staff of R.S. Samsuddin, 56 community health centres (CHCs) in the Sukabumi area, Sukabumi Health Office,
Local Authority Development of Sukabumi, and the Information and Communication Department of
Sukabumi. Health care personnel from R.S. Samsuddin the CHCs will participate as users of the system
during test periods and after the project has completed. Some staff from R.S. Samsuddin is also
participating in the project design and implementation. The project involves graduates students in the
Research Group on Biomedical Engineering at the Institut Teknologi Bandung. Sukabumi Health Office is
involved in management policy for health services in the area. The Local Authority Development is
expected to support the project sustainability.

To date the results of the project research activities have been presented in two national seminars, the
National Biomedical Engineering Seminar, Yogyakarta, 25 February 2006 and the Symposium on
Development of Emergency and Disaster Communication & Information System, Jakarta, 7 March 2006.

Start Date: July 2005
End Date: June 2007
Total Duration: 24 Months

Contact information

Christine Apikul
APDIP Programme Specialist for Content Development and Knowledge Management
[email protected]


Prof. Dr. Ir. Soegijardjo Soegijoko
Research Group on Biomedical Engineering
Biomedical Engineering Programme
School of Electrical Engineering and Informatics
Institut Teknologi Bandung
Jalan Ganesha 10, Bandung 40132, Indonesia
Telephone/Fax: +62 22 253 4117
Email: [email protected]