THE new national health plan (NHP) aims to address three main areas of concern that contribute to the bad health indicators of the country, Health and HIV/AIDS Minister Sasa Zibe said.
In the first national health plan implementation workshop held in Madang last week, Zibe said the K14.17 billion would be spent in the areas of improved health service delivery, strengthened health care system and address health issues and challenges.
He said the government had proven their commitment by approving the K14.17 billion, the cost of the new 10-year NHP.
“What we have achieved is in fact history making.
“For the first time, we have developed a budget based on evidence and got NEC approval for increased level of funding compared to any other time in the history of this nation.”
Improvements to hospitals, the policy calls for regional hospitals, provincial hospitals and specialised hospitals.
It is planned that PNG, in the next 10 years, will have 22 provincial hospitals, four regional hospitals and specialised hospitals. However, not all 89 districts will have hospitals.
“There are number of health centres in the districts and can be upgraded to hospital status,” he said.
The policy calls for 25 district and provincial hospitals to be rehabilitated.
Five new provincial and five new district hospitals to be built and the refurbishment of all 22 provincial
hospitals with equipment and medical supplies as according to their respective standards.
Four of the regional hospitals will be covered and refurbished to specialised status hospitals.
Water and sanitation would be upgraded and placed in all health facilities in the country, he said.
Zibe said in the first public private partnership arrangement, the new national state of art referral public hospital for PNG would be built.
In the second area of health system strengthening, issues on workforce, financing, drugs and medical supplies, leadership and governance, and information technology was to be addressed.
He said the policy calls for an increase of all cadres of clinical staff from the current 15,000 by 30% in the 10-year period.
A proper exit plan for health workers and retention incentives were also spelt out, he added.
In the area of health challenges, policy is directed at addressing the millennium development goals on child and maternal mortality, TB, malaria and pneumonia, and HIV/AIDS.
The new NHP will also focus on emerging and re-emerging diseases.