Access to Health Services for PLHIV in Sorong, West Papua

The city of Sorong has the highest rate of HIV/AIDS infections in the province of West Papua, and is among the highest in the Indonesian archipelago. People Living with HIV/AIDS (PLHIV) in Sorong are entitled to the same human rights as anyone else, and have the rights to dignity and health, including access to adequate medical services so that they may continue to live normal and productive lives. While these rights are protected under international, national and local laws and regulations, challenges still remain for the full enjoyment of the right to health for PLHIV in Sorong.

Article 3 of the Indonesian Law on Health 36/2009 grants everyone equal rights in obtaining access to health resources and in obtaining safe, quality and affordable health services. This puts the government responsible in planning, organizing, fostering, and overseeing the implementation of public health services, so that they can be enjoyed affordably by all. The government is also responsible for health facilities – both physical and social – for the community, including access to information, education and health care facilities. This responsibility also requires a commitment to maintain people in good health, which is especially important in services to patients infected with HIV/AIDS. That is to say, health care is the right of all citizens, including people with HIV/AIDS.

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