English / Bahasa Late last year Sewani fell seriously ill to Dengue fever and spent many weeks recovering in hospital and at home. She shares her experience below… Before I fell ill, I hadn’t been feeling well enough to work for two or three days. But I still went to work because I wouldn’t be able to get sick leave without a certificate from the factory clinic. That week it had rained continuously. One evening I didn’t go straight home after work, but instead went with a friend to her house. While travelling there in a small public bus we got stuck in heavy traffic on a flooded street. We were stranded in the traffic for around two hours, with the flood waters rising to our waists. I suspect that this is where I was bitten by a mosquito and infected with Dengue fever. The first day of the fever’s onset, I was working at the factory. I then went to the factory clinic where the doctor ordered me to stay the night. The next day, I was referred to the hospital. I was nursed in hospital for a week and then several times as an outpatient. All the costs were covered by the company’s employee health insurance (government mandated insurance in Indonesia that employers must cover). But there were three times I had to pay for treatment myself. They said that I would have to pay for my own vitamins or supplements because these weren’t covered by the health insurance. While in hospital, my mother came to keep me company. My mother continued to work each day but in the evenings she wouldn’t go home but instead came straight to the hospital. I felt bad for my mother, but she wouldn’t have it any other way. The tricky thing was that at the same time I was sick, my older brother and his children were also ill with Dengue Fever. So my brother and his wife were unable to take over from my mother and keep me company. It’s true that the cost of my treatment was covered by the company’s insurance. However we still had to spend quite a lot of money, especially for my mother’s transport costs. This cost quite a bit because the hospital was a long way from our house and also from my mother’s factory. Obviously I couldn’t get any additional pay (e.g. from overtime) for the whole time I was sick. So basically, being sick is a financial disaster! After leaving the hospital, I had to return to work immediately. As soon as I returned to work, my supervisor ordered me to go to the clinic so that they could check whether I was fit for work. No one told me anything, but when I was ordered to work the very next nightshift, I came to the conclusion that the clinic doctor must have reported that I was 100% healthy again.