Health Minister

Health Minister refutes article

In response, Minister Jelta Wong said: "My point in the television interview on Tuesday 4 February, 2020, was not to announce that students living in Mainland China are not important, rather it was to highlight the importance of minimising the risk of the novel coronavirus (2019-nCOV) from entering PNG borders - and that a mitigation process must be followed.

Gazelle sets funds for LLGs

Member for Gazelle and Health Minister, Jelta Wong, revealed this recently during the approval of this year’s development budget at the last District Development Authority board meeting at Kerevat.

The budget is worth K35, 489, 810.

Minister Wong said from the 2020 DSIP, K500,000 each will be allocated to the five LLGs – Central Gazelle, Toma-Vunadidir, Reimber-Livuan, Lassul-Baining and Inland Baining.

Out of that K500,000, 10 percent or K15,000 will be allocated each to administration and president support and 4 percent or K20,000 for project mobilisation.

Over K25m spent per year on AIDS treatment: Minister

Speaking at the recent observance of World AIDS Day, Health Minister Jelta Wong said: “The government, in its 2020 budget, has set aside an additional K10 million for HIV/AIDS treatment.”

Wong said the first case of HIV was diagnosed in 1987 in Port Moresby. Seven years later, PNG’s HIV epidemic was described as being generalised when 1 percent of the sexually active population in the country were diagnosed with HIV infection.

K100,000 for medical symposium

During the presentation today, Health Minister Elias Kapavore said the medical symposium is an important platform where critical research and papers are presented in an effort to better PNG’s health indicators.

PNG’s 55th Annual Medical Symposium will be held in Port Moresby from 1st - 6th September with the theme: “Health Education”. The objective is to address the poor health indicators by transforming the PNG Health workforce training to meet excellent standards and hence, meet PNG Vision 2050.

Midwives’ achievements celebrated

They were recognised for the critical role they play in improving neonatal and maternal healthcare in PNG.

PNG has one of the highest maternal mortality ratios in the Asia Pacific region with an estimated 733 maternal deaths per 100,000 live births.

The Australian government, in partnership with the Government of PNG, has been supporting the development of PNG’s midwifery human resources through scholarships for midwives and supporting capacity building for health training institutions that provide midwifery training.

Health authorities responsible for provincial facilities

Health Minister Sir Puka Temu said the decentralisation of financial powers back to the provincial health authority is to ensure rural health facilities are well catered for.

Currently there are only 11 provinces with a provincial health authority office.

The Minister believes this is the way to go and has instructed all CEO’s of these PHA offices to work closely with the governor and the district MPs.

Sir Puka said under the budget provisions, the health functional grants will go directly to the provincial health authorities.

Health Minister and Secretary visit PNGIMR

On Friday 24th November, the delegation was led by the Health Minister Puka Temu and Secretary of Health Pascoe Kase.

In welcoming the Minister and Secretary, Acting Director, Dr William Pomat said that it was an honour to have the Minister and Secretary to visit and for staff to report on IMR’s research achievements, challenges and solutions in order to save Papua New Guinean lives.

​Less access to healthcare for rural people

Our people are subjected to higher risks of contracting diseases and less access to quality healthcare.

Health Minister, Dr Puka Temu, said this during the opening of the new Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences lecture building at the Divine Word University in Madang.

“Through the government strategic plan and investment in higher education like DWU, we hope to enhance the health care delivery in remote areas of this land.”

Health Minister restricts media access

In a circular number 66/2017 dated on August 15, 2017, Sir Puka said recent media statements released by health officials have created fear amongst the community.

He said such statements have not been reported out of proportion without careful thought and sufficient evidence.

"This has tarnished and defamed a lot of personal at all health levels.

"I now instruct and direct that no individual health worker or chief executive officer or management and boards at all levels shall provide any information of health matters and/or issues, to any means of media.

New tobacco Bill passed

The Bill was passed 64 – 0 and repeals the Tobacco Products (Health Control) Act 1987.

Health Minister, Michael Malabag, when making the second and third reading of the Bill, said the former Act was 30 years old and an enhanced Government response was necessary to address the direct costs to individuals and the government.

He said there is a sharp increase in non-communicable diseases, particularly heart diseases, diabetes and cancers which are knownto be closely associated with cigarette smoking and exposure to it.