Health bars media statements

National

MINISTER for Health and HIV/AIDS Sir Puka Temu has issued a circular instruction barring boards and managements of all public hospitals from making any media statements.
Sir Puka, in the circular dated Aug 15, advised that only the Health Ministry would be responsible for making any statements.
“It has been noted recently that certain information on health matters have been released in the media by certain health institution personnel that has distorted and created fear and confusion in the community and has been reported out of proportion without careful thought and sufficient evidences,” Sir Puka said.
“This has tarnished and defamed a lot of personnel.
“I now instruct and direct that no individual health worker, chief executive officer or management and board at all levels shall provide any information on any subject of health matters and or issues to any means of media.
“This should only be made by the Office of the Minister for Health and HIV/AIDS and this instruction comes into effect as of the date of this circular.”
However, the National Doctors Association condemned the move.
Association national secretary Dr Sam Yockopua said public hospitals were funded by public funds which were taxpayers’ money and people had the right to know how they were being managed.
He said the association would release a formal statement regarding the circular.

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