JAKARTA — Indonesia PASTI BISA has produced and distributed 100,020 RT-PCR test kits to 19 provinces in Indonesia.
The development and production of Real Time Polymerase Chain Reaction (RT-PCR) test kits made in Indonesia is one project of the Technology Research and Innovation Task Force for COVID-19 (TFRIC19) formed by the Indonesia Assessment and Application of Technology Agency (BPPT).
Indonesia PASTI BISA, a collaborative movement started by East Ventures, raised funds worth IDR 10 billion to provide raw materials for production and distribution costs of 100,000 test kits, so that the diagnostic kit is available for free.
Nusantics, a biotechnology startup engaged in genomics, designed the RT-PCR test kits. PT Bio Farma then provides facilities and human resources to mass produce and distribute test kits throughout Indonesia.
Bio Farma produces 3,334 boxes equivalent to 100,020 test kits in a week. The company then distributed the test kits in stages, starting from May 14, 2020 to June 17, 2020. The last delivery was to BBTLKPP Ambon, Maluku Province.
Indonesia PASTI BISA decides the allocation based on the level of need in each province and the readiness of laboratory facilities, including the availability of open PCR systems and its operator.
Willson Cuaca, Co-founder and Managing Partner of East Ventures said that East Ventures is proud and grateful for the opportunity to contribute in Indonesia fight against Covid-19 through this RT-PCR test kit development project.
“The speed, cooperation, and effectiveness of the various parties involved in the project proves that the capacity and capability of local talent in the health and science industry cannot be underestimated and still have huge room to grow. East Ventures is committed to supporting other projects that can help build a self-sufficient Indonesia health ecosystem,” Willson said.
Honesti Basyir, President Director of Bio Farma said, as a SOE that has the spirit of #BUMNforIndonesia, the RT-PCR test kit project is one of the five Bio Farma milestones in supporting the fight against COVID-19.
“We are proud, as an SOE, able to contribute according to the competencies we have in biomolecules/life science, to produce the RT PCR test kit. We hope that collaboration will not only stop here, because by collaborating, we can speed up the discovery of new health products thus strengthening national health resilience,” Honesti said.
Head of BPPT Hammam Riza emphasized that Indonesia faces challenges in building a solid innovation ecosystem. The country needs a synergy between research institutions, universities, government, industry, and related associations. Without the proper orchestration and integration of resources, the innovation ecosystem is difficult to realize. TFRIC-19 comes with the concept of synergy to build an innovation ecosystem. BPPT provides a strong intermediary role, to hasten the stages of design, prototyping, validation, registration, and production so that in a short time RT-PCR Test Kit can be produced.
“All these channels need to be accelerated because the fight against COVID-19 is a race against time. The same principle applies to vaccine development. We need a leap of innovation, through cooperation and technology transfer from foreign companies to the domestic industry,” Hammam said.