Aussie govt sending over medical specialist team


A TEAM of Australian medical specialists are expected to arrive in Port Moresby next week to help combat the rise in Covid-19 cases.
The Australian government, under the leadership of Prime Minister Scott Morrison, will send an Australian medical assistance team comprising medical specialists and crisis response staff.
The help from Australia is in response to Papua New Guinea’s call for international assistance joined by the World Health Organisation.
In a statement yesterday issued by the Australian acting minister for foreign affairs Simon Birmingham, minister for health Greg Hunt and minister for international development and the Pacific Alex Hawke on behalf of the government, they said the team of specialists would provide immediate assistance once they arrived in the country.
The team would provide immediate ground assessment to improve and strengthen lab testing and also manage and control cases and assess the quality of emergency and public health.
They added that the government also planned to arrange for further assistance by consulting with the PNG Government, especially on issues concerning the country.
The ministers said there was also considerations for more funding to be given to PNG during this time.
“We will reprioritise a portion of our development programme funding to provide a package of the Covid-19 support to PNG and this would include medical supplies and fund provinces to prepare for the Covid-19 pandemic.”
Meanwhile, Australia has been assisting PNG for the last six months by providing testing and surveillance capacity to avert the spread of the Covid-19 in the country.