He was responding to questions raised by Member for Middle Ramu, Jonny Alonk, if the Minister would be visiting the province to engage with members of the provincial health sector and check on the progress of service delivery.
Minister Kapavore said the member’s questions refer to the implementation of a Provincial Health Authority for Madang Province.
The Provincial Health Authority is an Act of Parliament 2007, and in 2009 only three provinces implemented this Act.
Minister Kapavore said: “Twelve years later to date, I was in Morobe on 20th June to declare Morobe PHA. Former Minister said by end of June 2019, all PHA established in each province.
“While I’d like to congratulate the 15 provinces who have implemented the Act, Madang Province is one of the provinces who has yet to establish its PHA.”
The PHA replaces the Public Hospital Act 1994, that will have all those management and board under one arrangement, the Minister explained.
“At the moment it also replaces some parts of National Health Administration Act of 1997. These will be replaced by the PHA Act. While we have that in place, there will be proper administration and implementation of health services in our provinces,” Minister Kapavore explained.
Gulf Province will be declared this week to come under PHA arrangement.
“We still have NCD, Central Province, Simbu Province, and Madang still outstanding. We have to implement all PHAs by the end of this month. There is not time for delay.
“I urge all provincial leaders to liaise with my office to implement the PHA arrangement quickly. Development partners are also coming forward to support us. A lot of benefits coming through, through the PHA.”
The Minister said provinces who have performed poorly in their health indicators have improved since implementing the PHA Act.
“For example, Eastern Highlands Province, Milne Bay Province and West Sepik Province whom in the past were usually in the bottom 5 provinces with regard to health indicators. They’ve now improved and are in the top five,” he said.