Asa Ren and the Directorate General of Pharmacy, Ministry of Health of the Republic of Indonesia sign an Innovative Partnership in the development of Genomic-Based Health Technology in Indonesia focused on developing health technology to present innovative solutions in the form of genetic test screening.

To develop health technology in Indonesia, PT Asa Ren Global Nusantara (Asa Ren), an Indonesian healthcare startup with a focus on genomics and technology, and the Directorate General of Pharmaceuticals and Medical Devices (Ditjen Farmalkes) of the Ministry of Health of the Republic of Indonesia, which the primary responsibilities include the regulation, supervision, and development of the pharmaceutical and medical device sector in Indonesia, announced their collaboration on Friday, 29 September 2023. The agreement was signed by Aloysius Liang, Founder and CEO of Asa Ren, and Dr. Dra. Lucia Rizka Andalucia, Apt, M.Pharm, MARS, the Director General of Pharmaceuticals and Health Devices at the Ministry of Health of the Republic of Indonesia.

Established in 2016, Asa Ren is the first DNA data company in Indonesia with the most comprehensive bioinformatics in South East Asia. The company aims to enable innovation in Indonesia’s healthcare industry through the utilisation of longitudinal data and genomic data for drug discovery and personalised treatments, supported by international investors and partners.

The core focus of this partnership is the development of health technology, specifically aimed at providing innovative solutions in the form of genetic test screening. This technology is designed to furnish valuable information regarding health risks and conditions. By integrating genetic knowledge with existing health infrastructure, the technology holds the potential to enhance early detection, diagnosis, and management of diseases, thereby improving overall healthcare efficiency and quality of life.

This collaboration underscores a shared commitment to technology-based public health solutions, leveraging genomics and AI, to assist patients, clinicians, doctors, and other healthcare practitioners. It also aims to alleviate the future burden of public health costs.

This is also in line with the vision of the  Indonesian Minister of Health, Budi Gunadi Sadikin, who emphasized that investing in the Health Technology and Biotechnology sector serves not only business prospects but also strengthens Indonesia’s health resilience and adds value to healthcare. Through technology, the Ministry of Health has managed to reach more than 105 million people using the SATUSEHAT application, which will be integrated with all healthcare facilities, aiming to build a national health information system.

“My focus is to ensure we can achieve a better quality, more accessible, and more affordable healthcare for all. Recognizing the urgency of healthcare investment, we openly collaborate with the private sector, and the government will support through the regulations to facilitate investors, therefore we must communicate with each other,” said the Indonesian Minister of Health, Budi G. Sadikin.

Asa Ren

Dr. Dra. Lucia Rizka Andalucia, Apt, M.Pharm, MARS, the Director General of Pharmaceuticals and Health Devices at the Ministry of Health of the Republic of Indonesia, said, “The Ministry of Health, especially the Directorate General of Pharmaceuticals, views this partnership as a strategic innovation for health services in Indonesia. It is hoped that this synergy can help improve public health and create new opportunities in more personalized and effective healthcare. Additionally, it can enhance Indonesia’s competitiveness in global health services research and innovation.”

Founder and CEO of Asa Ren, Aloysius Liang, said, “The partnership between Asa Ren and the Directorate General of Pharmaceutical Health is anticipated to provide added value for both parties. The integration of health technology, such as medical applications and electronic medical records (e-Health Records), will streamline patient data management, optimize medical procedures, and enable more efficient care services. Asa Ren is committed to supporting the development phase of the national genomics program as packaged by the Ministry of Health in a sustainable manner.”

“Asa Ren serves as a health screener to identify the risk of disease through genetics, offering solutions that provide valuable guidance for further action. While this genetic test focuses on risk identification (preventive) and early detection of disease, it is not a curative measure. The use of polygenic risk scoring (PRS) will help understand and predict the risk of disease based on genetic factors, enabling more precise medical decisions and personalized healthcare.” concluded Aloysius.

Asa Ren has also initiated a research initiative aligned with the Ministry of Health’s goals. The results aim to become health products usable by patients, clinicians, health practitioners, and hospitals, facilitating personalized and effective precision medicine.

Founded in 2016, Asa Ren has consistently focused on consumer lifestyles through technology, allowing consumers to manage personal health information. The company seeks to enhance the Indonesian healthcare ecosystem with genetic-based products such as Premium DNA, 360 DNA, Asa Ancestry, Asa Prodigy (children’s products), Medical Check-Up (MCU), and online consultations available via the application (downloadable from Apple Store and Google Play Store). Additionally, Asa Ren customers can purchase products from Asa Ren reseller partners.

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The article is produced by editorial team of NOW!Jakarta