Rural aid posts singled out

National

Facilities in rural health centres are still a concern for doctors, East Sepik Provincial Health Authority acting director Dr Trevor Kelebi says.
Kelebi said doctors working in district hospitals and rural health centres adopted new skills to meet the needs of patients.
“If you are in a place like Aitape where you travel six hours to Wewak and three hours to Vanimo, and you have a mother travelling from Nuku – another two or three hours – who is in obstructed labour, you have no choice but to develop the skills in caesarean sections,” Kelebi said.
“On the way, if she ruptures her uterus, you have no choice but develop the skills to help her.”
He said the policies set by the Health Department and Government determined the lives of 80 per cent of the rural majority.
“The standards we set must not be too high that makes it too expensive for primary healthcare facilities, not only district hospitals but health centres and aid post to achieve those standards,” Kelebi said.
“We’ve got two populations and we’ve got to make sure that standards set must not be for level five and six but we go to be thinking about level four, three and two.
“So we need to develop a road map to ensure that standards being set are safe and affordable.”
Kelebi said from 2003 to 2013, the surgical theatre registry at Raihu District Hospital in West Sepik recorded over 3000 surgeries and out of that, half were caesarean cases.
He said “63 per cent were minor procedures, 25 per cent were major elective procedures and 12 per cent were major emergency procedures”.
Kelebi said according to national health service standards, level four hospitals should not carry out major procedures but they were doing them with limited resources and have  achieved positive outcomes so far.

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