ICC Initiate a Study on Alleged Violations of Rapid Test Services to Diagnose COVID-19 Committed by Hospitals
Indonesia Competition Commission (ICC) initiated a study on Rapid Test Services to diagnose COVID-19 perpetrated by hospitals. This Study is being carried out in line with the commitment of ICC to continue working to oversee business competition albeit being in a state of work from home.
The said initiative is a follow up on public complains about the offering of COVID-19 Rapid Test packages offered by several hospitals. This has caused a significant price increase of the COVID-19 Rapid Test packages. The findings of ICC with regard to the price offered by hospitals vary, ranging from IDR 500.000 to IDR 5.7 million for one-time testing. The value surely confines the capability of the public to purchase the rapid test services.
ICC member, Guntur S. Saragih, explained: “We received information on some hospitals offering rapid test services that are bundled with other medical service package for an initial screening of COVID-19. This is rather misleading to the public intending to only undergo a rapid test of the virus."
The study has been commenced since April 13, 2020 by the Directorate of Investigation and becomes a priority at ICC. If indeed the results of this study indicate an evidence of violation, then, the subsequent stage to be taken will be pre-investigation proceedings.
“ICC will give priority to this study in order to be resolvable in a near future. At the moment, we are gathering data within the scope of the Greater Jakarta and some regions under the supervision of the Regional Offices of ICC. If there is at least one instrument of proof, we will proceed to the pre-investigation stage,” stated the Director of Investigation of ICC, Gopprera Panggabean.
This study focuses on the deepening of whether the offering of the additional service package to obtain rapid test services constitutes a mandatory complementary product. ICC will also investigate on whether such service package a necessity for the diagnosis of the COVID-19 regardless of the result of the rapid test. “If the complementary product is not complementary in nature, then, this will have the potential to infringe the norm of Article 15 paragraph (2) of Law No. 5 Year 1999”, continued Gopprera.
ICC hopes that every party does not violate Law No. 5/1999, especially during the state of national disaster of the COVID-19 pandemic. In such a condition as we are undergoing now, testing through rapid tests is badly needed in order to support the efforts made by the government of Indonesia for initial COVID-19 cases detection. Therefore, ICC encourages the public to report any alleged violation of Law No. 5/1999.
Article 15 paragraph (2) of Law No. 5/1999:
Business actors shall be prohibited from entering into agreements with other parties setting forth the condition that the party receiving certain goods and/or services must be prepared to purchase other goods and or services from the supplying business actor.