President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono’s former doctor confirmed that the head of state did undergo a check up at the HSC Medical Center in Malaysia, despite claiming that he’d undertaken all his medical checks domestically since taking office.
Dr. Triatmo Budiyuwono, the former head of the presidential medical team, said on Friday that Yudhoyono got the checkup during a state visit there in 2005.
“At the time, the hospital had recently received an EBCT [electron beam computed tomography] scanning machine, and the hospital officials offered the president a checkup using the machine,” he told the Jakarta Globe. “Indonesia didn’t have such equipment back then, so going for just a checkup wouldn’t be a problem.”
Triatmo added that after the checkup, hospital officials took pictures with SBY and asked him to write a testimonial.
“I’m prepared to swear that the president had a checkup outside the country, and that was at HSC in 2005,” he said.
The confirmation comes a day after Yudhoyono raised eyebrows when he called on Indonesians to stop seeking medical treatment abroad, claiming that he only sought treatment inside the country.
“Honestly, I’m not really happy if Indonesian people, mainly wealthy
people or very rich people, go abroad for medical help,” he said in a
meeting at the Health Ministry on Wednesday. “The ones that benefit are our
In July 2011 at the opening of the Mochtar Riady Comprehensive Cancer Center in Jakarta, the president echoed a similar sentiment.
“I, myself, thank God, that for nearly seven years as the Indonesian president, I’ve always have my medical checkups here,” he said.
But according to staff at HSC Medical Center, Yudhoyono is a regular visitor.
The hospital brags on its website that Indonesian patients routinely choose Malaysian hospitals, adding that Yudhoyono comes in for regular checkups.
“Indonesian President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono is a regular customer. He comes for checkups,” Lim Yin Chow, a doctor at the hospital, said in a testimonial called “A Reputation for Success.”
Yudhoyono wrote a glowing review of the hospital after a checkup in 2005.
“I really enjoy having the opportunity to be checked by this fine medical center in Kuala Lumpur … [It is] a center of excellence in medical services,” the president wrote in a signed testimonial posted online.