Churches hailed for delivering health services

The National,Friday June 17th, 2016

Health Department secretary Pascoe Kase has praised church health providers for their efforts in delivering care services.
The churches continue to endure enigma to bring hope to millions, Kase said yesterday while initiating his department’s support of K500,000 for the churches.
He signed a memorandum of agreement with the Baptist Church for its initiation in reviewing the second edition of the Community Health Workers Health Care Manual.
“This is one of the first of its kind the Baptist Union Church has come up with in healthcare delivery. I applaud the churches for providing health services to the people of PNG,” Kase said.
The manual is a reference authored and was produced by an Australian missionary and medical doctor, Clifford Smith in 1970 while serving in the Tinsley Byer Valley, Western Highlands.
Baptist Union Church PNG project manager Joyce Melepia said for 30 years, rural health workers had been using Smith’s 800-page manual as a guide to save lives.
“The book has been the main reference book for training and practice, the edition is now 20 years out of date. This book needs a complete revision to provide community health workers with all the latest information they need to do their job,” Melepia said.
A team is working on a review programme of the manual.
The Baptist Union Church is spearheading the project to engage health experts in PNG and overseas to revise the book.
Consultation teams had completed Mamose and were now in the Highlands region.
“Hopefully, 60 per cent of the information will be new and updated because we have new diseases like HIV/AIDS, multi-drug resistant tuberculosis, dengue fever and other health challenges that keep emerging,” the church said.
About 15,000 copies will be printed.
The book is expected to contain at least 1000 pages in two volumes.
The goal is to put a copy of the third edition into the hands of every Community Health Workers and students by the end of 2018.