Health Department

Ineffective command affects supply of medical drugs: Sir Puka

Sir Puka said there is surplus medical drugs in-store at the Area Medical Store but break-down in communication is what’s causing the delay.

He said hospital managers and CEOs must always communicate with the Area Medical Stores for their supply of medical drugs.

He was responding to questions raised by the Member for Ijivitari Richard Masere, to clarify the shortages of medical drugs in the country.

“Can the good Minister tell the country the truth and confirm or deny if we have medical drugs?” Masere asked.

Additional polio cases reported

The case from Morobe is a four-year-old girl from Markham District. Her paralysis, including muscle pain and weakness in her right leg, started on 16 July 2018.

The girl has no record of receiving polio vaccine and no history of travelling outside of the province.

A case in Madang District is a 22-month-old boy who had an onset of weakness in both legs on 15 July 2018. The boy has no record of polio vaccination and no history of travel.

Health department slams anthrax report

The National Department of Health has confirmed with the Madang Provincial Health Authorities that anthrax disease was not an outbreak, though it existed among pigs in certain parts in the habitat.

According to World Health Organisation, anthrax is a disease caused by a bacterium called Bacillus anthracis. It is a disease which has existed for hundreds of years and which still occurs naturally in both animals and humans in many parts of the world. In its most common natural form, it creates dark sores on the skin.

Public servants still locked out

Health Department workers were still locked outside their Waigani office this morning when this newsroom visited them.

Despite the dull day, Health Department staff still went to work but only to find out again that their offices were still locked.

They arrived at work at 8am and sat outside the entrance of the Department office, with hopes that a senior officer will inform them whether the office was going to be reopened or not.

Some had personal items still in the office and were concerned.

​Dept, hospitals to tackle medical drugs issue

They will identify available funds and support the services to approach local pharmacies and suppliers to purchase items which are in short supply.

Secretary for Health, Pascoe Kase, said there should be no reason for patients to purchase supplies that should be available directly to the health system.

Kase reiterated his comments from last week stating that this was a complex issue in the rapidly growing country, with understandably increasing expectations and standards.

Kase defends procurement of medical drugs

Kase said it was incorrect to say that the unavailability of medical supplies in the country relates to poor procurement practices by the National Department of Health.

He said the procurement of medical drugs and equipment were complex but had been successful in the last five years.

Kase clarified that the Central Supply and Tenders Board (CSTB) awards the contract to the company involved in the distribution of medical kits in the country. 

​Public hospitals should not charge fees

All should be following the intent of the Government’s free healthcare policy.

This was made clear by the Secretary of the Health Department, Pascoe Kase.

In a statement, Kase says while the policy does allow for charging a reduced rate for specialist services, these should be the exception rather than the rule in public hospitals.

He made this statement in response to an article published in one of the local dailies which quoted an anonymous source claiming that Modilon General Hospital in Madang was charging for the provision of health care.

Girls get vaccinated against HPV

 PNG Against Cervical Cancer team, led by Gynaecologist Dr Lutty Amos from the Well Woman Centre in Konedobu have been going around schools in NCD vaccinating girls aged between 9 and 14 years.

The program commenced on May 1 following awareness workshops carried out in the schools last month. It ends at the end of May.  This is only the first dose of the HPV vaccination.

Girls who were vaccinated so far had consent forms signed by their parents and guardians.  

Health Support Workers issue threats to strike

PNGHSWA General Secretary Jack Suao issued the threats that will greatly affect all medical facilities throughout the country during this National Election period.

Suao in a media conference today said, the 14 days’ notice is because of the long delay by the Arbitration Tribunal Board to hear its outstanding logs of claims dating back to 2016.

He said this is because there is no Arbitration Tribunal Board in place to hear their log of claims.

Health support workers plan stop work

Over 3000 frustrated heath support workers, at all hospitals across the country, from cleaners and administration staff to bio engineers and technicians, morgue attendants and laundry staff, are ready to walk off. 

The planned strike will be taken against the Department of Personnel Management (DPM) for prolonged delay on the log of claims which includes housing allowance, pay increase, leave entitlements and other industrial matters.