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Indonesia’s ‘flying doctor’ receives award for her service in rural areas

Doctor Maria Louisa Rumateray with children from the Mairasi tribe while providing health services. (Photo: Sylvie Tanaga, Worldpress, Doctor Rumateray Courtesy Personal Document)

Maria Louisa Rumateray, a physician from West Papua, a province in the far east of Indonesia, is one of the inspiring women to win the Kick Andy Heroes 2022 Award.

As a health care practitioner, she specializes in women's health.

Doctor Rumateray's experience working in regions with limited access to health care enables her to assist patients to the best degree feasible. This is particularly true during the COVID-19 epidemic.

She dedicates her life and works as a physician to supporting people in different regions of West Papua who encounter daunting challenges with health treatment.

She bravely saves the lives of those who live in the most remote locations, like the Mairasi tribe in Kaimana, the Korowai tribe in Yahukimo, and the Karabura community in Wondama, in the West Papua area.

"I intend to continue serving. Because people who dwell in the shadows of the mountains will always require my presence, "Doctor Rumateray said at the award ceremony recently.

She was one of the seven winners of the Kick Andy Heroes 2022 Award in Jakarta, the capital of Indonesia, the world’s largest Muslim-majority country. 

Her health work helps many people in Indonesia, including impoverished people in West Papua, one of the country's most remote and disadvantaged areas.

Rumateray's performance was praised by Budi Gunadi, the federal Minister of Health of Indonesia, who attended the event.

“She is a servant, a healer, an exemplar, and an inspirer. She has worked diligently for 13 years. She established a free clinic for residents of Tanah Mutiara,” said Gunadi.

According to Gunadi, many people refer to Dr. Rumateray as a "flying doctor" since she travels to rural areas to assist the community.

Rumateray, a Christian, went back to her hometown of Wamena, Papua, soon after graduating from Jakarta's Kristen Krida Wacana University with a degree in medicine.

One of Indonesia's most prestigious awards, Kick Andy, named Doctor Rumateray as one of the Heroes of 2022 because of her efforts to be an inspirational person.

Recently, the prizes were given to several thought-provoking people in the fields of health, agriculture, culture, social work, education, religion, and health. 


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