Category Archives: Health

PM visits Goroka before flying to Lae

BY PEARSON KOLO


The  in the Eastern Highlands Province will soon manage its own funding directly from the national government to address the drug shortages and other medical issues.

Prime Minister Peter O’Neill announced this today in Goroka while visiting the near complete new wing of Goroka Hospital, being built at a cost of more than K88 million from the O’Neill government.

Prime Minister O’Neill said Goroka General Hospital will soon become a self-accounting Hospital together with Port Moresby General Hospital.

“The National Government will directly fund them to cater for their medical needs to provide consistent quality medical care to the people of the highlands,” Mr O’Goroka Hospital VisitNeill said.

The Prime Minister said he will be present during the official opening of the new women’s and children’s wing the hospital later this year and stressed that it is his government’s aim to provide good quality health care to the people of this country.

Mr O’Neill said Goroka Hospital is in a strategic location and serves the entire Highlands region and the state-of-the-art development was important.

Eastern Highlands Governor Peter Numu who accompanied the Prime Minister during his visit acknowledged Mr O’Neill and his government for funding the Goroka Hospital development and many other projects like the Goroka Airport terminal building and the Goroka Market project.

Governor Numu assured the PM that his government will make sure that every project and the respective funds provided by the national government will benefit the people of EHP, without a single toea wasted.

Mr O’Neill was welcomed by the chairman of the Eastern Highlands Provincial Health Authority chairman Malcolm Smith and staff at the Goroka General Hospital.

The Prime Minister presented K73, 000, money raised from a fundraising event, to the children’s ward.

Mr O’Neill and his delegates visited the new Goroka Airport terminal before retiring to the Pacific Gardens Hotel.

Straight after arriving in Goroka around 10am, he went to the West Goroka Lutheran Church and paid his tribute to late Terry Shelley, a citizen and long time resident and businessman in Goroka, before visiting the Hospital.

The Prime Minister also mention during his visit that he is looking at funding the construction of a national stadium in the EHP.

The Prime Minister and his team flew to Lae from Goroka moments ago.

 

Source: https://postcourier.com.pg/pm-visits-goroka-flying-lae/

Photo credit: Brian Wali

Cleaning, maintenance work begins at Jomba cells

Source: The National

By DOROTHY MARK 


Cleaning and maintenance work at the Jomba police cells began over the weekend following a National Court order for work to be done immediately.
Judge David Cannings issued an order for the provincial government to make available K50,000 of which K25,000 was to be paid to the contractor that built a new female and juvenile cell block as part payment.
Another K25,000 was to be paid to police for the clean-up and maintenance of the current cell block.
Madang acting police commander Senior Inspector Jacob Bando said the contractor had gave him keys to the new cells which were available for use.
Bando said Madang administrator Daniel Aloi had arranged a contractor for the clean-up and maintenance of the old cell block.
Cannings said the cell was unfit for human occupation.
The clean-up came after he ordered for 36 detainees to be released on human rights grounds.
Cannings’ orders followed the filing of a report by national court officials about the cell conditions and over crowdedness.

 

New TB facility to offer same day treatment

 

 

Port Moresby General Hospital has opened new standalone tuberculosis (TB) clinic and pathology laboratory.

TB patients could now get treatment after laboratory test and X-ray results are done on the same day at the new facilities at Port Moresby General Hospital.

Hospital chief executive officer Dr Umesh Gupta officially named the clinic after Dr Joseph Bana-Koiri yesterday, saying the new TB clinic would be able to conduct X-rays and sputum examinations of adult and child TB patients daily.

“Our aim is to be able to start treatment of TB patients within four hours of presentation to the TB clinic, certainly before he or she leaves the premises,” Dr Gupta said.

He said the relocation of the facility was urgently required because the present clinic posed risk of spreading TB to other patients and staff in the present clinic, X-rays were done twice a week and that again posed risks to staff and other patients, he added.

“The new facility would encourage more adult and children if they have experience common symptoms like coughing for two weeks, fever, night sweats, loss of appetite and weight loss can visit the clinic and be treated on the spot,” Dr Gupta said.

He said the new facility will support programs such as the introduction of the new child-friendly TB medication and will also support the concept of screening and treating of the family as a whole on the country.

Source: Post-Courier

Doctors call off strike

By GYNNIE KERO, REBECCA KUKU and HELEN TARAWA 


A PLANNED strike by doctors has been called off after the Government yesterday met four of their seven demands including the payment of K1.3 million to cover their insurance premiums.
National Doctors Association secretary Dr Sam Yockopua told The National last night the three remaining demands “are in process”.
“We are satisfied so we will continue work,” he said.
The strike by association members, which Health and HIV/AIDS Minister Sir Puka Temu and Personnel Department Secretary John Kali said would have been illegal, was to have started yesterday.
Sir Puka confirmed that K1.3mil had been paid and all the other demands were administrative matters which would be addressed.
“We have paid the premium insurance and we will address the other administrative issues as soon as possible,” he said.
Doctors this week threatened to withdraw their services in a nationwide strike if their sevens demands were not addressed immediately. They had submitted the same seven demands to the government earlier this year but received no response.
The demands are that:

  • An outstanding insurance premium of K1.13 million to be paid before close of business on Dec 14 (yesterday);
  • the outstanding NDA awards for national medical academics, the money managed by the University of PNG, to be paid by close of business on Pay 26 of 2017;
  • the State to show commitment to honour the award and facilitate the NDA HOS which includes financial contributions;
  • all doctors must have their contracts signed, gratuity calculations and payments done in compliance to the existing agreement by Pay 26 of 2017;
  • all doctors who have been employed must have their appointments confirmed, salaries and remuneration packages sorted out, and those seeking employment in the public sector must be promoted;
  • all outstanding rentals to be paid before close of business yesterday (Dec 14); and,
  • All outstanding claims by service providers must be paid by the end of the year.

 

Kali told The National that the strike threat strike contravened the Public Services Act and the General Orders. He said it would have breached an agreement signed between the doctors and the government which stipulated that doctors were engaged in an essential service and must ensure that their services were not hindered or interrupted by any industrial action.

Pom Gen to receive K100 million

THE Port Moresby General Hospital will receive K100 million of the K1.5 billion health sector allocation in the 2018 national budget, Health and HIV/AIDS Minister Sir Puka Temu says.
Sir Puka said they had been allocated 100 per cent funding but the challenge was how to implement the budget.
“I’ve been in this hospital most of my life and I’ve seen transformation under the new board. The highest institution in healthcare is the hospital,” he said.
“This is to bring the private sector skill, experience and acumen into the public sector. The things they lack are because of the Budget issues.
“I was health secretary before and I would beg the government to fund our health plan below 60 per cent. It’s now 100 per cent funding.”
Sir Puka said the key word was partnership and he urged the communities to help the management of the hospitals by doing their part.
“Don’t throw rubbish everywhere. Listen to security guards,” he said.
“Visit patients on time with one guardian. Doctor-patient relationship must be improved. Prescription practices must be good and patients must complete their doses to avoid drug resistance.”

Source: The National

29 youths graduate with certificate to deliver health services

TWENTY-nine young men and women were the first to graduate from the Kungumanda Foursquare Community Health Workers Training School in Wapenamanda, Enga, last Friday.
Their qualification is recognised by the PNG Medical Board.
It was the school’s fifth commencement exercises – those who graduated in the first four years were unlucky as they did not receive a nationally recognised CHW certificate but still served in the health sector. Enga Governor Sir Peter thanked the Foursquare Gospel Church for partnering with the provincial and national government to train health workers.
He admitted that there is an acute shortage of the health workers in the country and churches play a huge role in bridging that gap.
He called on the new community health workers to serve with love, commitment and dedication. Enga health authority chief executive Aaron Luia presented the certificate of registration recognising the Kungumanda school as an institution with the licence to conduct private health training.
Church of the Foursquare Gospel in PNG president and Foursquare national education agency secretary Rev Timothy Tipitap said it was relief for the school which had copped criticisms in the past 10 years with claims it was not a recognised institution.
Principal Sr Marivic Serafina said Kungumanda was an institution of excellent standards that will administer the holistic approach on basic health education of the highest order.
“Go out and be the light that the world wants to see. You are representing Jesus,” Serafina told the graduates.
“The people that you touch and give medicines will receive healing.”

Source: The National

PNG moving away from tied loans

Source: Loop PNG

10/ 12/ 2017

Acting Prime Minster, Charles Abel, says the Government is moving away from loan financing with tied conditions.

He said the Government has learned from experience and is now negotiating loans which have better terms for the country.

 

He said this following the signing of a concessional loan with the Czechoslovakian EXIM Bank for K172 million (Euro 55 million) for the Boram Hospital Upgrade Project.

 

Abel said given the experience of the China EXIM Bank loan, which had tied conditions, the PNC-led coalition is now working to move away from such arrangements.

 

He said the Government is now looking more at financing arrangements, which are not tied and will also have a trickling effect on the economy.

 

“We want to begin a process where we want to move away from what we call tied bilateral financing. Some of the conditions that come with these loans require that a company must come from that particular country, so we’re doing our best to move away from that.

 

“We want as much as possible to have open tender, and to have Papua New Guinean companies participate so that more of the indirect benefits from these financing can stay in Papua New Guinea,” he said.

 

Another aspect of the financing arrangements being explored by the Government is concessional loans with relaxed repayment terms.

 

The Czech EXIM Bank loan of K172 million for the Boram Hospital is one such arrangement, he said, which has 2 percent interest and 15-year repayment period with a three grace period.

 

“How we improve these terms so that we have more participation from local companies is very important to us,” Abel said.

Photo Credit: ABC News Page

 

Author: Cedric Patjole

Crackdown on public service

Source: Loop PNG

The Government is determined to boost public service efficiency.

 

Deputy Prime Minister and Treasurer Charles Abel says it is about investing in the right areas of the public service such as teachers, nurses and police.

 

“We want to support those and we want to trim down central agencies of government to make us more efficient,” he states.

 

“Those people who are in the public service need to have contracts and conditions, time management and NID cards, so that they turn up to work as a real human being and they get paid, they are clocking in and they are earning their pay and they are producing results,” says Abel.

 

The DPM wants the head of agencies to be held accountable for the management of their staff as well as themselves.

 

“If you breach appropriate provisions around wages or you don’t produce your reports on time to parliament without it being audited, you should be held accountable. It’s that manager that will drive the rest of them.”

 

Abel says there will be more emphasis on contracts for managers following a performance based system that is already in place, brought in by the last public service minister.

 

“When your contract gets reviewed, you will be thoroughly assessed for you performance.

 

“But I think we have to make it specific if your financial reports are not up-to-date and are not on time and you don’t have a valid excuse, it should be grounds for suspension and removal.

 

“It’s all about accountability and establishing standards and enforcing them.”

(Loop file pic)

Author: Meredith Kuusa

K14 Billion For 2018

 

This Government will mobilise necessary resources within the tight fiscal envelope to provide growth conditions to set the pace for future growth and development.

The 2018 Capital investment Budget consolidate key interventions that will encourage business activities, generate employment, increase both export and tax revenues, replace import, and broaden and diversify our economic base strengthening renewable sectors and manufacturing.

A total deficit figure of K1987.2 million has also been factored in, which will be financed through external sources comprising K1613.4 million and K375.8 million from domestic sources.

The financing requirement for 2018 will result in total government debt reaching K25,807.6 million by the end of 2018, equivalent to 32.2 percent of GDP.

There are no new surprises in the 2018 Budget as the government introduces taxation measures aimed at improving revenue collection through greater compliance, broadening the tax base more equitably and efficiently and making tax administration simpler and more effective.

Mr Abel, in handing the 2018 Budget in Parliament, themed “Review our priorities, refocus our energies and reinforce our strengths”, said the government will maintain key priority expenditures in education, health, infrastructure, law and order, agriculture, tourism and small and medium enterprises.

The government has restored the DSIP, PSIP and WSIP in 2018 with K10 million to each district totalling K880 million and provinces to receive K10 million each totalling K220 million and ward SIPs get K64.4 million.

It has also allocated K300 million for administrative and logistics preparation for the APEC meeting next year.

The budget for the first time has given a big boost with the introduction of an economic stimulus package that will cost K665.9 million to grow the economy through agriculture, tourism and SMEs.

Mr Abel said the government is committed to delivering the Alotau Accord 2, as started in the 100-Day Plan, and the 2018 Budget is the second component that should spur economic growth, generate jobs, and empower people through meaningful engagement in economic activities to better themselves.

“The government will continue to invest in key national infrastructure programs in 2018, particularly the Highlands Highway, coastal jetties, the missing link road program, hydro and gas power generation stations and the international submarine cable project,” he said.

He said these are important transformational projects that will reduce costs in doing business, improve market access for rural farmers, and improve and lower cost of communications for businesses and consumers.

“The 2018 Budget will shift focus to generating jobs and business opportunities for our people in agriculture, tourism and SMEs. And it will provide the platform to showcase the best of PNG to the world at the upcoming APEC Summit,” Mr Abel said.

NO CUTS TO CORE NATIONAL PRIORITIES, SAYS PM

28 November 2017

Source: Post-Courier

Prime Minister Peter O’Neill said the 2018 National Budget is based on common sense and restraint, and builds on the proactive manner in which the Government has managed the recent global economic pressures.

 

“When we formed the Government in Alotau, we promised to deliver stable and sensible administration, and you can see that commitment evident in this budget,” the Prime Minister said ahead of the tabling of the budget by the Treasurer in Parliament this week.

 

“In this budget, there will be no cuts to our core national priorities, particularly education and healthcare.

 

“We will deliver a productive and safe APEC summit in 2018 through modest expenditure that builds capacity and leaves the legacy in our Government agencies.

 

“Our Government will also continue to build more efficient public services that are increasingly capable while being less expensive to operate. I am looking forward to sensible debate about the budget that is based on fact and not misinformation.”

 

Mr O’Neill said while pressure on the economy from global factors is easing, the Government will continue to ensure fiscal discipline is maintained.

 

“There is no doubt that we are seeing improvements in the global economy, and this is reflected in positive indicators in our own economy.

 

“Commodity prices are returning to healthier levels but there is still a long way to go before we can relax.

 

“When global conditions were at their lowest, our Government managed the challenges we faced and this has placed us in a stronger position today. We continued to maintain positive economic growth through a program of reducing spending, managing expenses and rescheduling some infrastructure construction,” the PM said.

 

“It is because of our responsible approach that we can deliver the budget that will be presented to the Parliament this week.

 

“The Treasurer, working with all Cabinet members, and Treasury officials, has developed a very responsible budget that takes account of current global challenges.

 

“I congratulate our Treasurer and Deputy Prime Minister, Charles Abel, and look forward to the delivery of his first budget speech on Tuesday.”

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