PRIME Health

primary care cluster

Leading Research in Health

The Partnership in Research Indonesia and Melbourne (PRIME) is a milestone cooperation initiative between the University, Indonesia’s Ministry of Education, Culture, Research and Technology (Kemendikbudristekdikti) and leading Indonesian universities. Established in 2021, PRIME facilitates research and academic collaboration in Health, Social Sciences, and Engineering, with the goal of addressing global challenges confronting the world today. This exciting initiative is enhancing interdisciplinary research and training throughout Indonesia and establishes the University as a leading institute for research capacity development in Indonesia.

Through PRIME Health, the Faculty of Medicine, Dentistry and Health Sciences is partnering with the University of Indonesia, Gadjah Mada University and the University of Airlangga to deliver research programs in primary health care, health systems, infectious diseases and adolescent health.

For more information, please contact:

A/Prof Anita Horvath (Academic Lead, Indonesia Partnership Programs, FMDHS)

Want to know more?

MDHS Projects

See how MDHS is making a difference in health

  • STRAYA INDO - Primary Care Cluster

    Project title: Engaging adolescents and young adults toward better health of the next generation – STRengthening adolescent and young adult (AYA) friendly primary care services within the Health Promoting University framework in INDOnesia (STRAYA INDO)

    Key project leads from each university partner:

    • University of Melbourne
      Prof Lena Sanci
    • Universitas Indonesia
      A/Prof Indah Suci Widyahening
      A/Prof Dhanasari Vidyawati
      Dr Retno Asti Werdhani
      Dr Dessie Wanda
    • Universitas Gadja Mada
      Dr Fitriana Murriya Ekawati
      Prof Hari Kusnanto
      Prof Mora Claramita
    • Universitas Airlangga
      Dr Linda Dewanti
      Dr Pudji Lestari
      Dr Sulistiawati
      Dr Endang Surjaningrum

    Project descriptions: This research project aims to study the applicability and benefits of an adolescent and young adult (AYA) friendly primary care services within the Health Promoting University framework which is based on the patient-engagement and person-centered care principles, as part of the effort to ensure optimal health status of this population who with their education will become some of the country’s future leaders, and also of the future generation which they may produce. The research project will use co-design and the action research method and conducted in four years (2021-2024). An array of activities which includes secondary data analysis from the Healthcare and Social Security Agency and Indonesian Family Life Survey, analysis of the university clinic’s utilization and students’ health examination, survey on the perceptions of the AYA toward health and health care, a qualitative study to assess the primary care providers and stakeholders perspective on the AYA health, systematic review on the model of AYA friendly primary care in the low and middle-income countries, development and piloting of the AYA friendly primary care services in the 3 university clinics, as well as evaluation of its effect. To support the activities and to build the research capacity of the UI, UGM and UA, a series of training will be conducted every year by the University of Melbourne.

  • LoCaTe - Infectious Disease Cluster

    Project title: Long-term Outcome of Children with COVID-19 and treatment evaluation in Indonesia (LoCaTe)

    Key project leads from each university partner:

    • University of Melbourne
      Prof Julie Bines
    • Universitas Indonesia
      Prof Dwiana Ocviyanti and Dr Nina Dwi Putri
    • Universitas Gadja Mada
      Dr Ida Safitri Laksanawati
    • Universitas Airlangga
      Dr Dominicus Husada

    Project descriptions: For the past three years, most of the world has been affected by COVID-19, including children. Children are sometimes overlooked, probably due to evidence that children have milder symptoms and a low mortality rate than adults. Several studies have shown that children are more likely to have mild disease compared to adults. However, recent studies found that prolonged recovery of symptoms (Long COVID) was also seen in patients who had mild symptoms that can impair children’s daily activities. Besides that, there were increasing reports of children admitted to hospital with severe manifestations linked to previous exposure to COVID-19, called Multisystem Inflammatory Syndrome in Children (MIS-C). These are worth being concerned about because long-term issues of COVID-19 can induce several organ dysfunctions, including lung, cardiovascular, renal function, neurology disorders, and immunology disturbances. Besides the several medical aspects of COVID-19, children will still be growing. COVID-19 might also affect the growth and development and mental health issues, mainly due to medical care and social disruption. Furthermore, some issues related to children during the pandemic, such as school reopening, COVID-19 vaccine, and the habit changed toward infection prevention in COVID-19, might come into interest for further exploration. This study aims to explore the survival, MIS-C, and re-infection rate and explore the long-term outcome of COVID-19 in different multi-organ involvement and knowledge gap related COVID-19 vaccine in children, health protocol, and school re-opening. This study will contribute to giving more evidence for management, prevention, and health policy related to COVID-19 in the scope of pediatrics.

    Project highlights:

  • GeNerAte - Adolescent Health Cluster

    Project title: Preventing the Golden Generation from Stunting and Non-communicable Diseases through Improvement of Adolescent Health (The GeNerAte Study)

    Key project leads from each university partner:

    • University of Melbourne
      Prof Susan Sawyer
    • Universitas Indonesia
      Dr Bernie Endyarni Medise
    • Universitas Gadja Mada
      Dr Mei Neni Sitaresmi
    • Universitas Airlangga
      Dr Royke Tony Kalalo

    Project descriptions: Stunting and obesity have always been a burden to Indonesia. Although the number of stunting in under-five children was reported to decrease to 30.8% in 2018, this rate remains among the highest in the world. Meanwhile, from 2013 to 2018, the prevalence of obese children age 5-12 increased from 8.8% to 9.2%. These numbers are expected to increase in this COVID-19 pandemic. Furthermore, stunted children generally grow into obese adults and increase the risk of non-communicable disease (NCD). There were several national programs to tackle stunting and obesity, but this program never targets adolescents. Adolescence is a critical period since this is the last fastest phase of linear (height) growth before reaching the final adult height. Exposure to health behaviour, such as tobacco and substance use, unhealthy diets, physical inactivity, and internet addiction also happens during this period. Despite being an important period, the study that tracked how stunting and overweight emerge and how they relate to each other in adolescence is very limited. There is no study that comprehensively measure growth, development, nutritional status across the pubertal years of older childhood and early adolescence .in Indonesia. Hence, this research will study the growth, development, behaviour, pubertal timing, and the effect of current nutritional status among stunted and non-stunted prepubertal children in urban and rural areas. This research will provide basic research knowledge about linear growth patterns through puberty, as well as emotional health and wellbeing, in order to influence the national health policy.

  • Action Research for Strengthening Community-Based Surveillance System - Health Services Cluster

    Project title: Action Research for Strengthening Community-Based Surveillance System

    Key project leads from each university partner:

    • University of Melbourne
      Prof Barbara McPake
      Prof Jodie McVernon
      Dr Tiara Marthias
    • Universitas Indonesia
      Prof Sabarinah Prasetyo
    • Universitas Gadjah Mada
      Dr Likke Putri
    • Universitas Airlangga
      Dr Khairul Purba

    Project descriptions: The project focuses on strengthening the community-based surveillance system based on the lessons learnt from the COVID-19 pandemic, with particular focus on surveillance for non-communicable multimorbidity, influenza-like illnesses, and maternal and newborn health. The project aims to provide recommendations for health systems resilience in anticipating future outbreaks and pandemics through integration with existing surveillance system.

    Project highlights: The outputs of the project will include a model or design for a community-based surveillance systems that can help Puskesmas (public primary health centres) to carry out surveillance on non-communicable multimorbidity, influenza-like illnesses, and maternal and newborn health as well as a series of training for health professionals at the Puskesmas level and for key community partners. The project will also generate a number of publications including on a number of systematic literature reviews on various focus as well from the findings of qualitative and quantitative surveys that are part of the project.

  • DIVINE - Adolescent Health and Infectious Disease Cluster

    Project title: Dietary ModulatIon of Gut Microbiota on Nutritional Status and COVID-19 InfectioN in AdolEscents: Gut-Lung-Axis (DIVINE)

    Key project leads from each university partner:

    • University of Melbourne
      Prof Julie Bines and Prof Susan Sawyer
    • Universitas Indonesia
      Dr Rina Augustina
    • Universitas Gadja Mada
      Dr Emy Huriati
    • Universitas Airlangga
      Dr Purwo Sri Rejeki and Dr Lilik Djuari

    Project descriptions: The adolescents’ fatality rate for COVID-19 infection (2%) in Indonesia is among the highest in the Southeast Asian region. Malnutrition burden existed in Indonesia may cause gut dysbiosis and weaken immune system in this population. Efforts to reduce this emerging problem are crucial. The introduction of probiotics during adolescence may invert dysbiosis and improve antibody response. However, evidence on the effect of probiotic supplementation on improving nutritional status and reducing SARS-COV-2 infection in adolescents is lacking. This study aims to investigate the effect of dietary modulation of adolescent's gut microbiota through probiotic supplementation combined with healthy eating and physical activity counselling on nutritional status and antibody response to SARS-COV-2 infection. We also aim to assess the gut microbiota diversity, dietary intake, and antibody affinity against SARS-COV-2 spike protein. In year 1-2, we will conduct a screening (n=700) and cross-sectional study. In year 2-4, a randomized controlled trial will be conducted in Jakarta, Surabaya, and Yogyakarta. We will recruit 452 healthy adolescents aged 12-17 years, tested negative for COVID-19 by serology rapid test. They will be randomly allocated into two treatment groups to receive either probiotics (Bifidobacterium and/or Lactobacillus 109 CFU/day) or placebo for 24 weeks, combined with healthy eating and physical activity counselling delivered through a digital education platform.
    The research output will be nine scientific articles in four years, two intellectual property rights (pathways on determinants for adolescent susceptibility to COVID-19 infection; adolescents’ healthy eating and physical activity interactive online training modules), and policy brief on adolescent health and nutrition.