Lack of PHA Act regulation causing problems: MP

Gary Juffa

THE lack of regulations of the Provincial Health Authority (PHA) Act 2007 is causing problems in the provinces, Northern Governor Gary Juffa says.
Juffa wants Minister for Health Jelta Wong to take this issue to the National Executive Council (NEC) because the PHA Act has been there for the last 10 years without the regulations.
He said a good chairman and chief executive officer was the formula for a PHA to function, but there was lack of it.
“PHAs are not functioning (and) this is the reality,” he said.
“Oro’s experience, we were convinced that this (PHA) would be a better option for us but what we found it was the opposite.
“There is less funding coming into the province now.
“If there is funding that’s coming in, it’s bottlenecked at the PHA headquarters and it’s not making it to the districts and stations.”
Juffa said nurses and community health workers in the health posts in the province were charging patients fees to raise funds to purchase medical supplies.
Pomio MP Elias Kapavore also highlighted the need for the provincial health authority governance structure to be reviewed and standardised.
“I do not agree that the PHAs are not receiving enough funds,” he said. “If we look at this year’s budget, the PHAs were allocated more than K900 million, which is a huge amount of funding going straight to the PHAs. So if it’s not about funds, where is the problem?
“The Health Department must look at the governance structure because this will impact the operations of the PHAs.”