Siti Fadilah

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Siti Fadilah Supari
Minister of Health (Indonesia)
In office
August 20, 2004 – October 22, 2009
President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono
Preceded by Achmad Sujudi
Succeeded by Endang Rahayu Sedyaningsih
Personal details
Born (1949-11-06) November 6, 1949 (age 64)
Surakarta, Indonesia
Nationality  Indonesia
Spouse(s) Muhammad Supari (deceased)
Alma mater University of Indonesia
Occupation Cardiologist
Profession Physician
Politician
Religion Muslim

Siti Fadilah Supari (born November 6, 1949, in Surakarta, Central Java) is a prominent cardiology research specialist and an Indonesian politician who served as Minister of Health from 2004 to 2009.[1] Supari attained global notoriety in 2007, when she took on the World Health Organization's practice of sharing avian influenza virus samples.[2][3]

Minister of Health[edit]

Supari was appointed Minister of Health by President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono on 20 August 2004. She served until 22 October 2009, when she was succeeded by Endang Rahayu Sedyaningsih an epidemiologist and close advisor in her team.[4]

Influenza debate and standoff with the WHO[edit]

On 3 August 2006, Supari made the unprecedented move by announcing that the Indonesian government will make genomic data on bird flu viruses accessible to anyone. Supari said, opening up global access could be the key to unlocking such important information as the origin of the virus, how it causes disease, how it is mutating, the sources of infection, and how to prevent or cure the virus.[5] "But in future cooperation on bird flu with other countries, the delivery of specimens should be regulated under Material Transfer Agreement documents as is commonly practiced in scientific cooperation," Supari added. The Economist wrote, Supari started a revolution that could yet save the world from the ravages of a pandemic disease. That is because Indonesia's health minister has chosen a weapon that may prove more useful than today's best vaccines in tackling such emerging threats as avian flu: transparency.[6]

It was unclear at the time what prompted Supari to share data, given the widespread reluctance of countries affected by the H5N1 virus to share their data, out of fear such disclosure could trigger economic sanctions.[7] An editorial published in Nature magazine just days before, highlighted this problem with China's practice of belatedly publishing details of a case that tested positive for the virulent H5N1 strain in 2003 — contradicting the government's official line that none had occurred before November 2005. Although not mentioning Supari by name, the editorial also addressed a confirmation by the World Health Organization (WHO) that a cluster of eight cases[8] in an extended family in Northern Sumatra was the first unequivocal occurrence of limited human-to-human transmission of the H5N1 virus.[9]

On 22 August 2006, just two weeks after Supari made her announcement, Nancy Cox, the director of the influenza division at the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) communicated in a press release that following Indonesia's announcement, it too made genomic data on bird flu viruses publicly accessible.[10] The following day a correspondence letter appeared in Nature magazine shedding light on what had triggered the sudden shift in Supari’s stance and that of the CDC. The scientific community had just been introduced to Peter Bogner, the new driving force in the virus sharing debate.[11][12]

Supari would later describe in her book an affinity for Peter Bogner, his plea to her government to share its bird flu virus data and his concern when she annoyed the US administration at times.[13] Supari wrote, he told me indirectly my speech had been too sharp, or Peter Bogner has the capability to change the world’s opinions.[14] A former broadcast executive at Time Warner, he was not only familiar with intellectual property issues, but more importantly, he was friendly with Supari’s government following his role in the 2004 tsunami relief efforts.[15] He would turn out to be the mastermind behind the GISAID initiative, a mechanism devised and financed almost exclusively by him.[16]

When Supari attended the 61st World Health Assembly on 16 May 2008, the day GISAID’s database was launched, Supari delivered on her promise and made available genetic H5N1 data alongside other countries like China and Russia.[17][18] Within four months, this publicly accessible resource offered the world’s most comprehensive collection of influenza data.[19]

Claiming Western governments could be developing viruses for dissemination in the developing world with the goal of generating business for pharmaceutical companies, Supari refused World Health Organization (WHO) researchers access to Indonesia's H5N1 bird flu virus samples in 2006.[20] Indonesia resumed sending some H5N1 samples to WHO after a new agreement that developing nations would get access to vaccines.[21]

2009 flu pandemic[edit]

During a press conference on 28 April 2009, Supari reassured the public over the government's response to the swine flu threat and responded to a question on the origin of the H1N1 virus and whether it could have been man made. Supari stated she was not sure whether the virus was genetically engineered but it's a possibility.[22] Several news outlets, among them Bloomberg News and the Times of India, reported about an investigation by the WHO into a claim by an Australian researchers that the swine flu virus circling the globe may have been created as a result of human error.[23][24] Australian virologists Adrian Gibbs, John Armstrong and Jean Downie suggested in a paper[25] published in the Virology Journal, the new H1N1 strain, may be the product of three strains from three continents that swapped genes in a lab or a vaccine-making plant, suggesting its origin could be more simply explained by human involvement than a coincidence of nature.[26]

In 12 May 2009 Siti Fadilah Supari express her dissatisfaction of seeing a lot of foreign medical student in Indonesia. She asked Universitas Padjadjaran Rector, Bandung to cut down foreign student intake in phases especially from Malaysian while visiting Cicendo Eyes Hospital, Bandung [27]

Personal life[edit]

Supari is a cardiology research specialist based in Jakarta. Until his death in 2009, Supari was married for 36 years to Muhammad Supari. Quite common to Indonesians, Supari enjoys to sing karaoke as she did for her late husband just days before his passing.[28]

Controversy[edit]

In April 2012, Supari was named in a hearing at the Jakarta Anti-Corruption Court as a suspect in a corruption case surrounding a Health Ministry project in 2005.[29] It is alleged that Supari abused her powers as Minister of Health during the procurement of medical equipment for the ministry’s crisis centre in 2005. The project allegedly led to state losses of Rp 6.15 billion (US$670,000).[30]

Books[edit]

  • It's time for the world to change - In the spirit of dignity, equity and transparency - Divine hand behind avian influenza, ISBN 978-979-17357-0-4

References[edit]

  1. ^ The Jakarta Post (26 April 2011). "Health Ministry being continuously picked on: Siti". The Jakarta Post. 
  2. ^ Jiang, Yuxia (20 March 2008). "Indonesia accuses U.S. of abusing bird flu virus". Xinhua News Agency. Retrieved 31 December 2012. 
  3. ^ Stephanie, Nebehay (20 November 2007). "WHO hopes to resolve row on bird flu virus sharing". One India News. Reuters News Agency. Retrieved 31 December 2012. 
  4. ^ "Indonesia, Dr. Endang Rahayu Sedyaningsih, MPH, Dr. PH., Minister of Health". The Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD). Retrieved 5 January 2013. 
  5. ^ Rukmantara, Arie (4 August 2006). "Bird flu data now open to all". The Jakarta Post. PT. Bina Media Tenggara. Retrieved 5 January 2013. 
  6. ^ A shot of transparency (10 August 2006). The Economist. The Economist Newspaper Limited http://www.economist.com/node/7270183 |url= missing title (help). Retrieved 5 January 2013. 
  7. ^ Branswell, Helen (4 August 2006). "With Indonesia's say so, WHO to share bird flu data with scientific community". The Canadian Broadcasting Corporation. The Canadian Press. Retrieved 5 January 2013. 
  8. ^ Global Alert and Response (31 May 2006). "Avian influenza – situation in Indonesia – update 16". World Health Organization. Retrieved 5 January 2013. 
  9. ^ "The time for sitting on flu data is over". Nature magazine 441 (1028). 29 June 2006. doi:10.1038/4411028b. Retrieved 5 January 2013. 
  10. ^ CDC Media Relations (22 August 2006). "CDC and APHL Make Influenza Virus Sequence Data Publicly Accessible". United States Department of Health and Human Services. Retrieved 5 January 2013. 
  11. ^ Quirk, Mary (October 2006). "Non-WHO global initiative on sharing avian influenza data". The Lancet Infectious Diseases (Reed Elsevier) 6 (10): 621. doi:10.1016/S1473-3099(06)70589-8. Retrieved 8 January 2013. 
  12. ^ Mary Quirk (October 2006). "Non-WHO global initiative on sharing avian influenza data". The [Lancet Infectious Diseases] ([Reed Elsevier]) 6 (10): 621. doi:10.1016/S1473-3099(06)70589-8. Retrieved 6 January 2013. 
  13. ^ Fadilah Supari, Siti (2008). It's Time for the World to Change: in the spirit of dignity, equity, and transparency: Divine Hand Behind Avian Influenza. Sulaksana Watinsa Indonesia. p. 127. ISBN 978-979-17357-0-4. Retrieved 8 January 2013. 
  14. ^ Fadilah Supari, Siti (2008). It's Time for the World to Change: in the spirit of dignity, equity, and transparency: Divine Hand Behind Avian Influenza. Sulaksana Watinsa Indonesia. p. 40. ISBN 978-979-17357-0-4. Retrieved 8 January 2013. 
  15. ^ Nicholas Zamiska; Betsy McKay; Almut Schoenfeld; Nonna Fomenko (31 August 2006). "A Nonscientist Pushes Sharing Bird-Flu Data". The Wall Street Journal (Dow Jones & Company, Inc.). p. B1. Retrieved 8 January 2013. 
  16. ^ "Influenza scientists, WHO face off in virus row". International Herald Tribune (The New York Times Company). AP. 3 October 2008. Retrieved 8 January 2013. 
  17. ^ McDowell, Robin (16 May 2006). "Indonesia agrees to hand bird flu information to new online database". [The Associated Press]. Retrieved 8 January 2013. 
  18. ^ Irwin, Rachel (Spring 2010). Indonesia, H5N1, and Global Health Diplomacy III (2). Global Health Governance. ISSN 1939-2389. Retrieved 8 January 2013. 
  19. ^ Robin McDowell (3 October 2008). "Influenza scientists, WHO face off in virus row". The Jakarta Post. AP. Retrieved 8 January 2013. 
  20. ^ "Q&A: Siti Fadilah Supari" (fee required). Nature News. Nature Publishing Group. 2007-12-09. 
  21. ^ Wulandari, Fitri (2007-02-16). "Indonesia to resume sending H5N1 samples to WHO". Reuters. Thomson Reuters. 
  22. ^ "Indonesian minister says swine flu could be man-made". ABS-CBN Interactive. Agence France-Presse. 28 April 2009. Retrieved 4 January 2013. 
  23. ^ Jason Gale; Simeon Bennett (13 May 2009). "Swine Flu May Be Human Error; WHO Investigates Claim". Bloomberg News. Retrieved 5 January 2013. 
  24. ^ Kounteya Sinha (May 16, 2009). "H1N1 flu: WHO rubbishes lab test gone wrong theory". The Times of India. Bennett, Coleman & Co. Ltd. Retrieved 5 January 2013. 
  25. ^ Adrian J Gibbs; John S Armstrong, Jean C Downie (24 November 2009). "From where did the 2009 'swine-origin' influenza A virus (H1N1) emerge?". Virology Journal. doi:10.1186/1743-422X-6-207. 
  26. ^ Bennett, Simeon (24 November 2009). "Scientist Repeats Swine Flu Lab-Escape Claim in Published Study". Bloomberg News. Retrieved 5 January 2013. 
  27. ^ Rambu Kota (2009-05-12). "Menteri Minta Mahasiswa Kedokteran Asing Disetop". Rambu Kota. Indonesia. "Menteri Kesehatan Siti Fadilah Supari mengaku kurang senang melihat banyaknya mahasiswa dari luar negeri belajar ilmu kedokteran di negeri ini...." 
  28. ^ "Almarhum Ir Muhammad Supari, Suami Menkes Siti Fadilah Supari, akan Dimakamkan di Karawang". Badan Nasional Penempatan dan Perlindungan Tenaga Kerja Indonesia. Antara News Agency. 29 March 2009. Retrieved 4 January 2013. 
  29. ^ The Jakarta Globe (18 April 2012). "Indonesia KPK: Former Health Minister Supari named suspect in graft case". ICAC News. 
  30. ^ The Jakarta Post (26 April 2012). "Health Ministry being continuously picked on: Siti". The Jakarta Post. 

External links[edit]

Political offices
Preceded by
Achmad Sujudi
Minister of Health
20 August 2004 – 22 October 2009
Succeeded by
Endang Rahayu Sedyaningsih