Garbage Clinical Insurance

Garbage Clinical Insurance(GCI) is a micro health insurance program which uses recyclable waste as a financial resource. With this program, the community is able to pay for clinical services by using garbage as payment to an insurance scheme. The project predominately targets waste collectors and encourages the community to mobilize their own unused resources to improve their access to health services. It further breaks down barriers between health facilities and community members.

Individuals with low-incomes collect garbage from the streets and bring it to GCI. The waste is then weighed and separated and valued. The individual is then “paid” in the form of a medical health insurance: For as little as 0.66 Euro per month, an individual is given access to healthcare, rehabilitative healthcare, basic free treatment, in-clinic counseling and laboratory checks, for example.

The separated garbage is then sold onto waste companies and collectors; organic waste is used for animal feed, inorganic waste can be converted to “upcycling”, products and then sold for a higher amount. that is, the creation of products and sold. This money is used to finance the medical care for the individual, minus the profit that goes to GCI. By showing people how much their waste is worth, the scheme encourages communities to organize and create sustainable financing from their own resources. This, in turn, improves their access to medical treatment and the quality of public health program with respect to promotive, preventive, curative and rehabilitative wellbeing. It further offers the community an incentive to start an organized waste management and waste entrepreneurship system from household level so as to benefit from continual health insurance. The scheme partly also contributes to the improvement of local sanitation as rubbish is collected regularly.

Indonesia has a population of approx. 251 million people* with almost half of the population surviving on less than 2 USD a day and 60% without health coverage. With a garbage output of 200,000 tons a day, Indonesia ranks as the second highest generator of plastic waste worldwide. The GCI initiative combines both problems creating a solution allowing people to access healthcare.

In general, residents must pay the government a fee for garbage disposal, however the poor management of municipal waste services has been linked to premature deaths and chronic illnesses dues to rubbish lying around. By collecting this waste and delivering it to GCI, a twofold problem is tackled: A range of healthcare services can be covered for as little as 10.000 IDR (approx. 066 Euro) and environmental issues due to neglected garbage are solved.

*Source: National Statistic Center, 2014

The prototype of the Garbage Clinical Insurance has replicated its clinics in 5 areas. Each insurance project has achieved approximately 500 members.

700 to 1000 customers are envisaged for the service contributing between 462-660 Euros. From this total the scheme projects that 10-15% of these customers are expected to become sick and require healthcare (per month). The GCI program is supported by the community through the trading of waste, for example, compost production, selling of plastics.

  • Garbage required
  • Recycling facilities
  • Health Clinics

Key Facts

Organization: Indonesia Medika
Contact: Dr Gamal Albinsaid
Operating in: Indonesia


Waste Management


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