Thousand plus OOH operations since inception

The Operation Open Heart (OOH) is committed to saving lives of ordinary Papua New Guineans with heart conditions.

Following the end of a successful one week operation, OOH patron and Sports Minister, Justin Tkatchenko said since its inception over 20 years ago, OOH has produced fantastic results with over 1,000 successful operations.

Tkatchenko highlighted that OOH raises about K1 million each year from fundraising events and receives support from business houses and organisations.

He made reference to the PNG National Government and Australian Government that have also always contributed to this worthy course.

“It’s been a fantastic result and everything that we’ve raised pays for patients who can’t afford treatment overseas.

“Many heart patients throughout the country are dying out there in the provinces as they cannot get the medical services or the assistance that they need because they cannot afford it.

“We are now changing that so we can sponsor them and look after them and have the surgeries done here in PNG,” Tkatchenko said.

Local cardiothoracic surgeon, Dr Noah Tapaua said the operations are a very big help to citizens across the country as the provincial hospitals do not have the facilities to conduct an open heart surgery.

Dr Tapaua said OOH also helps patients receive help in the country at a low cost rather than traveling overseas which would cost a patient about K60 000 to receive help overseas.

He said through OOH, we can see the benefit of treating more patients locally than overseas.

The one week operation this week saw nine heart patients successfully undergone open heart surgery at the Port Moresby General Hospital.

Quintina Naime