• Shinta Hadiyantina Department of State Administrative Law, Faculty of Law, Universitas Brawijaya, Malang, Indonesia
  • Zainal Amin Ayub Legal & Justice Research Centre, School of Law, Universiti Utara Malaysia
  • Dewi Cahyandari Department of State Administrative Law, Faculty of Law, Universitas Brawijaya, Malang, Indonesia
  • Amelia Ayu Paramitha Department of State Administrative Law, Faculty of Law, Universitas Brawijaya, Malang, Indonesia
  • Zuryati Mohamed Yusoff School of Law, Universiti Utara Malaysia



Medical tourism, transborder data flows, medical record, personal data protection, Indonesia and Malaysia, cross-border healthcare


Medical tourism is popular within the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) region, especially in the Indonesian region. The
economic prosperity, closer vicinity as compared to Jakarta, and the quality of medical services provided in the neighbouring countries
lead to medical tourism prospering among the Indonesians. Malaysia is one of the most frequently visited countries by Indonesians as
medical tourists. The growth of medical tourism triggers issues of the adequacy of the Indonesian and Malaysian laws to regulate
cross-border medical records. It is the aim of this study to examine the adequacy of the current laws in handling cross-border medical records. This study applied doctrinal legal research methodology, i.e., mainly library-based research, where the main legal materials were from Malaysia and Indonesia. It was found that the need for personal data protection is a necessity since boundaries among jurisdictions are becoming “borderless”. The Malaysian law, although comprehensive, has yet to gazette any country as a “whitelisted country” to allow for cross-border data. The Indonesian law does not regulate crossborder medical records. The risk of personal data leakage has become imminent. The importance of cross-border medical records protection is important to create safe integrated medical records. While Malaysia has enacted a comprehensive legal framework on personal data protection (including medical data), Indonesia needs to enhance its legal framework in protecting the data. Regionally, the legal framework of cross-border personal data between Malaysia and Indonesia should be updated in accordance with the ASEAN Data Management Framework.


Journal article

Abd Mutalib, N. S., Soh, Y. C., Wong, T. W., Yee, S. M., Yang, Q., Murugiah, M. K., & Ming, L. C. (2017). Online narratives about medical tourism in Malaysia and Thailand: A qualitative content analysis. Journal of Travel & Tourism Marketing, 34(6), 821-832.

Al-Awqati, Q. (2006). How to write a case report: Lessons from 1600 BC. Kidney International, 69(12), 2113-2114.

Ayub, Z.A., & Yusoff, Z.M. (2007). Leave Me Alone! Syariah v civil law. Malayan Law Journal, 6, xcix.

Ayub, Z.A., & Yusoff, Z.M. (2015). Search and Seizure of Digital Evidence and Privacy Issues in Malaysia. Current Law Journal, 1 LNS(A), lviii.

Bali, A., Bali, D., Iyer, N., & Iyer, M. (2011). Management of medical records: Facts and figures for surgeons. Journal of Maxillofacial and Oral Surgery, 10(3), 199-202.

Cheng, T. O. (2001). Hippocrates and cardiology. American Heart Journal, 141(2), 173-183.

Eissler, L.A., & Casken, J. (2013). Seeking Health Care Through International Medical Tourism. J Nurs Scholarsh, 45(2), 177-184.

Greenleaf, G. (2019). Global Data Privacy Laws 2019: 132 National Laws & Many Bills. 157 Privacy Laws & Business International Report, 14-18.

Hutchinson, T., & Duncan, N. (2012). Defining and Describing What We Do: Doctrinal Legal Research. Deakin L. Rev, 17, 83.

Kamleitner, B., & Mitchell, V. (2019). Your Data is My Data: A Framework for Addressing Interdependent Privacy Infringements. Journal of Public Policy & Marketing, 38(4), 433-450.

Kassim, P.N.J. (2009). Cross-border Issues in The Development of Medical Tourism in Malaysia: Legal Challenges and Opportunities. J Law Med., 17(1), 59-73.

Mohd, E., Ayub, Z.A., & Mohd Anuar, H. (2018). Regulatory Barriers in Collecting Assessment Rates Arrears of Local Authorities in Malaysia. The Journal of Social Sciences Research, 6(1), 1049-1055.

Munn, L., Hristova, T., & Magee, L. (2019). Clouded Data: Privacy and the Promise of Encryption. Big Data Soc., 6(1), 1-16.

Ormond, M., Mun, W. K., & Khoon, C. C. (2014). Medical tourism in Malaysia: How can we better identify and manage its advantages and disadvantages? Global health action, 7(1), 25201.

Pickert, K. (2008). A Brief History of Medical Tourism. TIME. November 25, 2008.

Smith, R., Álvarez, M.M., & Chanda, R. (2011). Medical Tourism: A Review of The Literature and Analysis of a Role for Bi-Lateral Trade. Health Policy, 103(2-3), 276-282.

Taylor, I. (2017). Data Collection, Counterterrorism and the Right to Privacy. Polit Philos Econ., 16(3), 326-346.

Warren, S.D., & Brandeis, L. (1890). The Right to Privacy. Harv Law Rev, 4, 193-220.

Woogara, J. (2001). Human Rights and Patients’ Privacy in UK Hospitals. Nurs Ethics, 8(3), 234-246.

Yusoff, Z.M. (2011). The Malaysian Personal Data Protection Act 2010: A Legislation Note. NZJPIL, 9, 119.

Yusoff, Z.M., & Ayub, Z.A. (2019). Privasi di tempat kerja: Tinjauan sudut perundangan di Malaysia. Kanun: Jurnal Undang-undang Malaysia, 31(1), 55-84.


Douglas, N., Douglas, N., & Derrett, R. (2001). Special Interest Tourism. John Wiley and Sons Australia Ltd.

Greenleaf, G. (2014). Asian Data Privacy Laws: Trade & Human Rights Perspectives. OUP Oxford.

Salter, M., & Mason, J. (2007). Writing Law Dissertations: An Introduction and Guide to the Conduct of Legal Research. Pearson Education Ltd.

Chapter in a book or entry in a reference book

Dobinson, I., Johns, F. (2017). Legal Research as Qualitative Research. In McConville, M., & Chui, W.H. (Eds.), Research Methods for Law (2nd ed., pp.18-47). Edinburg University Press.

Webpage on a Website References

Association of Southeast Asian Nations. (2021). ASEAN Data Management Framework. Accessed March 9, 2022.

Badan Pusat Statistik (2015). Pertumbuhan Ekonomi Indonesia Tahun 2014. Berita Resmi Statistik. Accessed March 9, 2022.

Badan Pusat Statistik (2020). Produk Domestik Bruto Indonesia Triwulanan 2016-2020. Accessed March 9, 2022.

Casalini, F., González, J.L., & Nemoto, T. (2021). Mapping commonalities in regulatory approaches to cross-border data transfers. OECD Trade Policy Papers No. 248. Accessed March 10, 2022.

Gan, T.T. (2018). Data and Privacy Protection in ASEAN – What Does It Mean for Businesses in The Region? Deloitte. Accessed March 10, 2022.

Malaysia Health Care Travel Council (2019). Inaugural Malaysia Healthcare Expo 2019 in Jakarta Aims to Attract 15,000 Visitors. Accessed March 9, 2022.

Numbeo. (2021). Health Care Index by Country. Accessed March 9, 2022.

Patients Beyond Borders (2020, January 21). Patients Beyond Borders Announces Top 10 Cities for Medical Tourists in 2020. News Wise. Accessed March 9, 2022.

Statista. (2020). Consumer Price Index (CPI) of Health Care in Singapore 1990- 2020. Accessed March 9, 2022.

Additional Files



How to Cite

Hadiyantina, S. ., Ayub, Z. A., Dewi Cahyandari, Amelia Ayu Paramitha, & Mohamed Yusoff, Z. (2022). TRANSBORDER DATA FLOWS: PROTECTION OF MEDICAL TOURIST PERSONAL DATA IN MALAYSIA AND INDONESIA. Journal of International Studies, 18, 269–291.