By WALLACE KIALA
THE Port Moresby General Hospital (POMGH) cannot cater for the city’s expanding population, Minister for Health and HIV/AIDS Sasa Zibe said last Friday, The National reports.
Therefore, the Health Department and the National Capital District Commission (NCDC) were working in collaboration to improve and expand four clinics in the suburbs, he said.
Speaking during the swearing-in of the hospital’s new board, Mr Zibe said the hospital did not have the required resources to function effectively and fulfil its expected role and responsibility.
He said the national hospital was currently providing medical services way beyond its scope; it was serving a population far larger than its capabilities.
At the moment it is serving the NCD, Central and Gulf provinces.
Mr Zibe said POMGH was a national referral hospital and a teaching hospital and should set best clinical and medical practices where young people learn the right attitudes of being a doctor, a nurse or an allied health worker.
He said the Health Department reforms, which were being carried out in collaboration with the NCDC, were of importance to POMGH.
To ensure sound public health management, a team led by Dr Timothy Pyakalyia had been assigned to work with NCDC to provide professional advisory support.
Under this strategy, it is envisioned that the four urban clinics at Hanuabada, Gerehu, Kaugere and Nine-Mile would be upgraded to be able to perform normal deliveries and to focus on overall maternal and child health services as well as minor illnesses.
“If all goes well, this arrangement would ensure fewer burdens on POMGH, allowing it to focus on its core functions,” Mr Zibe said.
The new board members sworn in included deputy chairman and community representative Rahe Maraki, Rev Somi Setu (church rep), Robin Yanapa (NCDC) and Dr Sylvester Kotapu (Central provincial health).
Current chairman Sir Brian Bell and business community representative Cathy Johnston and women’s representative Sose Tamarua were reappointed to the board.
The ceremony was witnessed by Health secretary Dr Clement Malau, his deputy Dr Paison Dakulala, POMGH chief executive officer Dr Alphonse Tay and senior Health Department and hospital staff.
Meanwhile, Sir Brian called on Mr Zibe to fast-track the disbursement of more than K20 million approved by the Government for infrastructure development and maintenance of major facilities at the hospital.
Sir Brian said work on major hospital projects had been stalled due to lack of funding.
He said that since the hospital was functioning as a primary, secondary and tertiary health care facility and a national referral teaching hospital, the board’s plea for increase in manpower and other resources must be given high priority.