Lack of funds forces hospital to scale down operations


THE Western Highlands health authority does not have enough funds to support its normal operations, says an official.
Acting chief executive officer Jane Holden said the Mt Hagen General Hospital closed most outpatient services and by Wednesday (tomorrow) hope to reduce inpatients from 250 beds to 100.
Holden said the hospital had been working on this for 10 days and currently have 138 patients.
This excludes the Covid-19 isolation beds.
Holden said the cuts applied to drugs and medical supplies meant they were being asked to buy the increasing volumes of the supplies and drugs.
She said if the hospital gets funding, they will try and maintain a service at 80-100 beds, if not, they will need to close.
“Wednesday is when we will need to make that decision,” she said.
Holden said currently, the hospital is only offering surgical emergency services to save life or limb- these patients were included in the 100-bed target.
Meanwhile, the children outpatient was closed because some staff were tested positive for the Covid-19.
It is also understood that K1 million is needed every month for the hospital’s operation, but this amount was decreased and the funds given were not enough for the overall operation.