THE Southern Highlands health authority (PHA) is going through a tough situation due to the closure of the provincial administration building – Agiru Centre.
It cannot access rural health funds (health functional grants) which are controlled by the provincial administration and treasury.
PHA chief executive officer Dr Joseph Birisi said the centre had been closed for almost two months by some disgruntled supporters of regional election candidates and was disrupting health services, especially in the rural areas.
He said due to closure of the centre, cheques for the quarter could not be printed and released and these were some essential health services.
As a result:
- All rural health vehicles were grounded due to no fuel. Thus, health workers could not do outreach and immunisation programmes;
- medical supplies have run out so round for Hagen Area Medical Store (AMS) not done;
- some of the bills have not been paid to the service providers and recently power to the Ialibu Hospital has been cut. PHA also has pending bills for other health facilities to pay up.
- PHA needs stationery; and,
- Some of PHA vehicles not registered.
“We can’t go on like this while the majority of the people are suffering and relevant authorities, our duly-elected leaders of the province need to address this promptly,” Birisi said.
“This fight (election related tussle) is between two minority factions and majority of the people in the five
districts of the province are suffering.”