“This is a concern now,” says the President of the National Doctors Association, Dr. James Naipao.
Dr Naipao was referring to the Port Moresby General Hospital redevelopment plan.
“The Board of PMGH and Management might think otherwise. This statement stands to be corrected if otherwise there is one.
“At present, according to the National Health Services Standards, PMGH is a level seven national referral and teaching hospital for the country. But, in reality and on the ground, it is working as a level five hospital. It is a true statement that will not be disputed, and the fact should not be taken as a privy.”
On the other hand, Dr Naipao highly commended the board and management of PMGH for seeking funds from the PNG government, NGOs and business houses to redevelop PMGH.
“The facelift of Port Moresby General Hospital (PMGH) thus far is seen and acknowledged by everyone that has visited the hospital,” he says.
“The staff of this hospital can also agree on this. The board and the management of PMGH must be acknowledged for this refurbishment.
“However, the same cannot be said of the adequacy in the supply of medical drugs, consumables and non-consumables at this hospital.
“And soon, after the further redevelopment and higher treatment modalities setup built, PMGH will claim its status as the level seven hospital for Papua New Guinea whilst also providing services of a level 5 and 6 hospital.”
The NDA president suggested that any flat (schematic designs), 2D and 3D designs of the redevelopment needs all parties to know what is in this planning and designing, funding and construction and hand over stages.
“Funding agents need to know, management and board of PMGH need to know. Health Department with its Medical Services Standards Division, which comprise the clinical chiefs and health facilities division need to know and play an active role.
“Clinicians and staff of PMGH need to know and participate in the planning, School of Medicine and Health Sciences Faculty needs to know. And, in dealing with soil and earth fault lines, Works Department needs to know.
“A cancer centre will also be incorporated and built which is a tremendous news for the populace, but stringent procedures need to be followed for its safety inside and outside. Central Tenders Board needs to know and evaluate the open tender.
“For any public development, an open public tender will not discriminate the redevelopment or any development for that matter.
“All stakeholders must agree first before any construction starts. After planners and the builders go, the end users of the development will be clinicians, staff of this hospital and the patients that use it. Because of this, and at present, it is paramount to respect the clinicians who are raising this issue for wider consultation.
“Safety for the hospital structure, workers and patients are paramount. For equipment and instrument, since PMGH is a Government institution, what PMGH brings in will automatically be standardized for use in other hospitals in the country, and this must be taken note of by the Facilities Division of Department of Health.
“The other nutshell is, PNG in particular the public sector, is very well known for inflating purchase and construction costs, therefore everyone must take heed of this. At the end of it all, PNG wants to see a true level seven hospital in the country, therefore every stakeholder must be involved.
“People of PNG and visitors will use Port Moresby General Hospital and it will then indeed truly serve itself as a level seven hospital having the equivocal facilities, setups and manpower resources connoting itself as the National Referral and Teaching Hospital for the country.
“And, for any health facility development in the country, it must follow the guidelines imprinted and outlined in the 2011 National Health Services Standards.
“Every hospital management and board wanting to redevelop or build a health facility must look at this standard (NHSS). So far, the new Gerehu Hospital development, Wewak Hospital development and Angau Memorial Hospital redevelopment have gone through this tedious but comprehensive stakeholders’ brainstorming guided by the 2011 National Health Services Standards Guidelines, resulting in a favourable outcome for each project.”