NEGOTIATIONS are taking place under the partnership with Australia to establish four specialist hospitals to provide special health services currently not available in Papua New Guinea.
Minister for National Planning and District Development and Pomio MP Paul Tiensten said this was negotiated in Brisbane recently with Australian ministers and would focus on giving priority to hospitals and health services in the country.
He was speaking last Saturday at Warangoi in the Sinivit LLG, East New Britain, during the official handing over of a doctors’ residence worth K120,000 and pediatric ward worth K120,000 under the district services improvement programme.
He said these four proposed hospitals would provide services that currently see people spending so much to travel overseas to get.
Mr Tiensten said they were looking at specialist hospitals and not just general hospitals that could cure new diseases that were not experienced in the country.
He said one of these specialist hospitals could be set up in ENB for the NGI region.
But Mr Tiensten said this plan would have to materialise and during that time there was a need to upgrade existing health facilities.
Meanwhile, the scale down exercise of the Nonga Base Hospital has seen the upgrade and shift of health services in health centres and aid posts.
The Warangoi rural hospital in the Sinivit LLG is one of these health facilities that recently gained rural hospital status.
He said the hospital was just completing its first phase and there was a need to plan for the second phase to cater for the people’s needs and to target the growing population at Warangoi.
Mr Tiensten said currently the hospital, as it is, could not meet requirements for the people at Warangoi and it was hoped these deficiencies could be addressed soon.
Mr Tiensten said this hospital was a very important considering that Nonga would be condemned very soon.
He said currently, the province was facing pressure with health services with only St Mary’s Vunapope operating and as such Warangoi and other rural hospitals at Kerevat and Palmalmal needed to expand quickly.
He said he hoped the provincial government would secure funding for the new proposed hospital that would replace Nonga.