By WALLACE KIALA
THE labour ward of the St John Hospital at Gerehu, in Moresby Northwest, has not operated yet although the hospital opened more than eight months ago.
Hospital director of medical service Raipen Dikinsep said yesterday it needed additional equipment to open the ward.
Mr Dikinsep said St John needed adequate funding from the Government for the labour ward to complement the ante-natal and post-natal services which the hospital was now providing.
The St John-administered Gerehu hospital was the first urban clinic to be classed a level 4 rural hospital with the objective of fulfilling the Government’s public-private partnership in health care.
It was also meant to ease the burden imposed on the under-resourced Port Moresby General Hospital.
Mr Dikinsep said during Christmas and Boxing Day the hospital was treating more than its normal 300 patients a day.
“We usually have 200 to 400 patients every day but over the Christmas, we were treating more than 600 patients a day and this number would continue as we go in to the school holiday period,” he said.
Mr Dikinsep said it had been good eight months so far and the hospital administration was happy to have achieved so much in terms of providing appropriate services and the community support it gained in less than a year.
The hospital which provided 24-hour emergency services is able to serve 25,000 general patients a month, including a 20-bed ward for general inpatients.
Other departments already in operation are reception, outpatient, an eye clinic, ante-natal, maternity, TB and HIV/AIDS clinics which would be run by100 health workers from St John and the Government.