Understanding the impacts of NPM and proposed solutions to the healthcare system reforms in Indonesia: the case of BPJS

Erniaty Erniaty, Harun Harun

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Citations (Scopus)


This study critically evaluates the adoption of a universal healthcare system recently introduced by the Indonesian government in 2014. Our study is driven by the lack of critical analysis of social and political factors and unintended consequences of New Public Management, which is evident in the healthcare sector reforms in emerging economies. This study not only examines the impact of economic and political forces surrounding the introduction of a universal health insurance programme in the country but also offers insights into the critical challenges and undesirable outcomes of a fundamental reform of the healthcare sector in Indonesia. Through a systematic and detailed review of prior studies, legal sources and reports from government and media organizations about the implementation and progress of an UHC health insurance programme in Indonesia, the authors find that a more democratic political system that emerged in 1998 created the opportunity for politicians and international financial aid agencies to introduce a universal social security administration agency called Badan Penyelenggara Jaminan Sosial (BPJS). Despite the introduction of BPJS to expand the health services’ coverage, this effort faces critical challenges and unintended outcomes including: (1) increased financial deficits, (2) resistance from medical professionals and (3) politicians’ tendency to blame BPJS’s management for failing to pay healthcare services costs. We argue that the adoption of the insurance system was primarily motivated by politicians’ own interests and those of international agencies at the expense of a sustainable national healthcare system. This study contributes to the healthcare industry policy literature by showing that a poorly designed UHC system could and will undermine the core values of healthcare services. It will also threaten the sustainability of the medical profession in Indonesia. The authors offer several suggestions for devising better policies in this sector in the developing nations.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)346-353
Number of pages8
JournalHealth Policy and Planning
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 1 Apr 2020


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