Launch of YHP in Indonesia extends the reach of our disease prevention work to 22 countries

14 August 2018 – On the 14th of August, AstraZeneca Indonesia announced a new partnership with the Indonesia Ministry of Health (MOH), and Yayasan Plan International Indonesia (YPII) to implement the Young Health Programme in three cities across Indonesia, Jakarta, Bogor, & Mataram over the next three years (2018 – 2020). Aligned with the national movement initiated by MoH together with Ministry of National Development Planning (Bappenas), otherwise known as the People’s Healthy Lifestyle Movement (GERMAS), YHP Indonesia aims to reduce the uptake of unhealthy behaviours among youth such as smoking, harmful use of alcohol, poor diet and lack of exercise that lead to NCDs in later life.

“We feel privileged to have this opportunity to collaborate with the Indonesian government and Plan International to implement this award-winning disease prevention programme here in Indonesia,” said Krishnanand Atreya, Country President Director of AstraZeneca Indonesia. “The YHP reflects our commitment to sustainable healthcare and builds upon last year’s Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with MoH under the Healthy Lung framework.  We believe that in order to improve the health of the next generation, we must protect the health of young people today and we have a role to play in making that happen.”

According to WHO (2014), NCDs are the leading cause of death in Indonesia.  NCDs account for 71% of total deaths. These include cardiovascular disease (37 percent), cancer (13 percent), chronic respiratory disease (5 percent), diabetes (6 percent), and other non-infectious diseases (10 percent). Based on the recent data stated in Jakarta, Bogor Regency and Mataram areas show a high percentage of young people over 10 years old who are smoking on a daily basis (23.2% in Jakarta, 27.1% in West Java, and 26.8% in West Nusa Tenggara)[1].  

dr. Theresia Sandra Diah Ratih, MHA, Head of Sub Directorate of Chronic Lung Disease and Immunology Disorder, Directorate of Prevention and Control of Non-Communicable Diseases, General Directorate of Disease Prevention and Environmental Sanitation, Ministry of Health Republic of Indonesia. “In Indonesia, smoking behavior is prevalent -- nearly one-third of the population aged above 15 years are smokers by 36.3%, moreover male smokers have reached higher than 66% or almost 2 of 3 men are smokers, while women smokers are at 6,7%. The significant increase in smokers also occurred amongst adolescents, aged 15-19 years, which has more than multiplied from 24.2% in 2001 to more than 54% in 2016.  Other unhealthy lifestyles such as eating habits with an unbalanced menu, lack of vegetables and fruit, consuming excessive salt and sugar, as well as fat and worsened by lack of physical activity and bad habits of consuming cigarettes and alcohol, contribute to the occurrence of non-communicable diseases. This unhealthy lifestyle attributes to 80% of the causes of NCD which could have been avoided. Besides an unhealthy lifestyle, NCDs are also caused by environmental and genetic factors. "

"Therefore, Non-Communicable Diseases or NCD is one of the significant challenges in Health Development now and in the future. Seeing this, the increasing illness and mortality due to increasing non-communicable diseases in Indonesia, the efforts made by the Ministry of Health include promotion of healthy lifestyle, disease prevention, as well as rehabilitation efforts. In addition to the role of the government as a regulator, this must be supported by community, professional organizations, the private sector, educational institutions and other organizations that focus on treatments to reduce morbidity and mortality due to NCDs. Together, hand in hand, we can make the GERMAS movement successful, by increasing public knowledge and awareness for healthy living, encouraging people to change unhealthy behavior and in promoting a healthy lifestyle," added dr. Sandra.

Aligned with MoH objectives, YHP will realize its commitment to young people’s health through policy and service provision. The programme will provide training to young people on leadership and youth advocacy, to ensure that the advocacy efforts of the programme reflect and include the voices of young people.

“Adolescence is a critical period in the development of the biological, emotional, and social aspects of a human life. It is during this development phase that the patterns of behaviour and habits that have long-term impact are formed. It is important to equip our youth with a complete knowledge about NCDs and the consequences of risky behaviours," said Dini Widiastuti, Executive Director of Yayasan Plan International Indonesia.

“The main focus of YHP is on tobacco use, prevention and reduction. In addition, the programme will also focus on addressing risks such as alcohol consumption, lack of physical activity, unhealthy diets, gender equality and Sexual Reproductive Health and Rights (SRHR). The YHP aims to promote healthy living for young people by empowering young people with knowledge and information to make healthy choices and reduce their risk of developing NCDs in adulthood.” added Dini.

Fahmi Arizal, Project Manager for Young Health Programme (YHP) of Yayasan Plan International Indonesia said, "We will implement the YHP in South Jakarta, Bogor Regency, and Mataram because of the high rates of tobacco use and increased risk in these communities.  Our holistic strategy includes empowering and developing peer education programs. Teenagers spend a lot of time with their peers. Negative peer pressure can encourage unhealthy behaviors as much as it can also be a force for positive change. Through the peer education training, young people become agents of change. The second strategy is a training program targeted at local communities, or influencers such as parents, and teachers, who play an important role in the development of young people.  We will provide training for healthcare providers to strengthen the quality and access of healthcare, and to impart to them the knowledge and skills about unhealthy behaviours, so that they in turn can share with the young people they serve and care for. We will cooperate with the government to ensure the sustainability of the program and to advocate for the needs of young people”.

Over the next 3 years, the YHP aims to engage 900 parents across 18 Posyandu ramah Remaja (PRR) centres; 360 teachers and 750 peer educators from 24 schools, which includes 12 Junior High Schools and 12 Senior High Schools across Jakarta, Bogor, and Mataram. In addition, the YHP will support 195 health professionals from 18 Puskesmas spread over the three cities.

Rizman Abudaeri, Director of PT AstraZeneca Indonesia said, "Since it first launched in 2010, the Young Health Programme has reached 22 countries across 5 continents and has provided disease prevention and health information to more 2.25 million young people.  We are proud to launch the programme here in Indonesia and to have it complement the work of our Healthy Lung programme. We aspire to go beyond the boundaries of science by working with our partners to address NCD prevention. We are committed to ensuring that young people have a voice by identifying their health needs, and being involved in planning and delivering solutions.”

Present at the launch event was Randy Martin, an Indonesia actor and singer. He gave a testimonial about his concern on unhealthy habits such as smoking amongst young people, as well as his action as part of this collaboration to curb this habit.


[1] According to Basic Health Research Report – Riskesdas, Indonesia Ministry of Health 2013