ON March 8, I had to rush my 16-month-old baby to the accidents and emergency section of Port Moresby General Hospital.
We arrived at 6pm and had to wait for three hours before we were attended to.
Within the first 30 minutes of our wait, two patients died and another almost died.
If her husband had not cried in anguish and alerted a doctor, she could have died.
There were so many doctors around but many of them looked everywhere except at the patients.
There was a doctor whose mobile phone appeared glued to his ear.
He was talking for hours and did not do any work.
Anyway, at 9pm, I was given a referral letter to the children’s outpatient clinic for the following day.
During that night, I had a hard time nursing my sick child.
The next day, I went to the clinic where a sister checked and treated my baby.
However, my baby’s condition got worse and I had to return to POMGH on Wednesday.
This time, after my explanation, I was referred to a paediatrician.
There was only one doctor, a resident medical officer while the other five were absent.
I felt for her (Dr Yarong) as she would forgo her lunch hour to attend to the children.
After a long wait, I was called in at 2:46pm.
Rushing for time, I rushed to the dispensary to collect drugs as per the prescription.
It was 3:05pm but the officer refused to serve me and told all the patients who came in after 3pm to return the following day.
But according to a notice, the normal operating hours were 8:30am to 3:30pm.
The officer said he closed at 3pm sharp. I was so furious and ripped off the notice and hit the door.
Another officer opened the door, cooled me down and served me with the other officer looking on.
I told him the hospital made a mistake by recruiting a lazy, incompetent person like him.
From the dispensary, we rushed to the x-ray examination room.
To my surprise, two of the three x-ray machines were out of order.
The only machine left was in poor working condition but I forced myself in and asked kindly if they could assist.
One kind-hearted technician saw my desperate situation and assisted.
It appears to me POMGH is in a critical situation and is close to dying.
Unless the hospital management is overhauled completely, more patients will die there instead of being cured.
The POMGH management must employ competent medical officers who know what A&E means.
What we have right now is a bunch of lazy doctors.
Doctors must not be allowed to carry mobile phones, they should be banned.