Hospitals need cancer facilities


PERFECT timing today to raise awareness on this dreaded disease called cancer as many of our people are dying from because of the lack of treatment facilities in the country.
Cancer knows no boundaries, it does not select who to attack and it can bring down one very fast when it attacks.
While those who can afford overseas treatment go, spare a thought about another cancer patient who does not have the luxury of doing that.
Life can be very unfair but that is reality here in PNG and, no, it’s not a bad dream.
Just stop and think about what they go through every day.
It is World Cancer Day today – a day marked to raise awareness of cancer and to encourage its prevention, detection, and treatment.
The primary goal of World Cancer Day is to significantly reduce illness and death caused by cancer and is an opportunity to rally the international community to end the injustice of preventable suffering from cancer.
Hospitals are critically ill-equipped and under-resourced, which severely affects their capabilities to provide quality healthcare.
The ordeal of those who seek treatment in the country, especially at the National Cancer Treatment Centre in Angau Hospital in Lae, is something no one should be experiencing or going through if only those who were responsible to ensure there were specialists with equipment did their job right the first time.
The desperate cry and plea for those currently diagnosed with cancer is to be able to live another day and hoping for a miracle to wake up to the news that the cobalt machine is working and it’s your turn today to receive treatment.
Many have passed on waiting for that dream to become a reality.
We should equip our medical doctors and nurses with the best and latest medical equipment and have a facility that is covered with back to back technical support and warranty from the equipment suppliers.
From CT scans, ultrasound machines, MRI scans to digital X-ray systems and everything else.
We should have the best, well-trained regularly updated technically skilled biomedical engineers, managers and technicians to ensure all these medical equipment are always up and running for our doctors and nurses use to save and prevent loss of lives, through early detection and prevention of the root cause of illness or medical disorder.
Those in authority should ensure that skilled local specialists are well looked after and retained for a least five to 10 years with binding employment contracts for continuity.
The Government should be prepared to provide sufficient funding annually to build capacity.
We need to put aside personal opinion difference of how to fix loop holes in our primary health care system and at the same time seriously and commit to entry and pushing secondary health to a new level.
Let’s all get behind Angau Memorial Hospital and the Port Moresby General Hospital and get those respective cancer facilities working to save lives.
And for that to happen we need to have a strong, committed and visionary leadership in all hospital authorities to lead without fear or favour to ensure that the Government’s policy initiatives and programmes for a quality healthcare system become a reality.


  • Previous governments, bug companies and business have the opportunity to buy and/or donate those life saving cancer treatment machines and instruments. It’s not a big deal, but it all comes down to being more responsible, visionary and especially one has to know where priorities lie. Life matters and is the absolute priority. Millions a spent for instance in sponsorship to support PNG sports teams competing nationally and internationally. How about diverting some of those money to the health sector? PNG is a developing nation if course and it will be really tough to equip every single hospital with those machines and instruments. But at least the national.and provincial governments should ensure that each region has a cancer treatment facility.

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