The National, Tuesday July 9th, 2013
A K5 MILLION health facility at the Kuruk Health Centre in Mt Hagen, Western Highlands, was opened by Australian High Commissioner Deborah Stokes last Friday.
The upgrade was delivered through the Papua New Guinea-Australia
incentive fund for infrastructure upgrade that included two new sub-health centres and 14 staff houses.
Stokes said Australia was increasing access to health care in Western Highlands and Jiwaka and would refurbish rural health facilities.
She said the facilities would expand clinic services in critical areas such as maternal and child health.
“Health needs in PNG are huge – infants have a one in 13 chances of not making it to their fifth birthday and the maternal mortality rate is one of the highest in the Asia-Pacific” Stokes said.
She said these new facilities would make a difference, with the Kuruk and Fatima health centres providing women and children with new maternity wards, antenatal clinics and 24-hour staffing.
Stokes said since 2000, Australia had built K350 million worth of health and education infrastructure in PNG through the incentive fund.
“The incentive fund supports well managed organisations to have access to funding for innovative projects that will have a strong development impact for men, women and children in PNG,” she said.
The incentive fund would also extend funding to other Catholic-run health services.
Catholic Health secretary for Western Highlands Sr Divya expected outpatients, inpatients, immunisations, antenatal services and supervised births to double thanks to the new and upgraded facilities.