Tell me now what have I become
There is a need to rethink our wasteful customary practices

PNG's forgotten backwater to receive a hospital facelift

Daru hospital in decline (2)PETER S KINJAP

THE forgotten backwater that is Daru is to receive funding from Australian Aid for its seriously dilapidated hospital.

Daru hospital has only three wards in one unit. According to Hospital CEO Sister Orpah Tugo, the paediatrics ward, the surgery ward and the medical ward are all stationed in one unit with 10 beds allocated for each.

Furthermore, the gynaecology ward, the labour ward and the obstetrics ward share one unit again with 10 beds allocated for each.

With the risks posed by contagious diseases and health standards to maintain, the hospital with the counter funding of Australian Aid is looking at building new wings to isolate each ward.

CEO Tugo said that the hospital is in desperate need of uplift and they will also look at expanding the operating theatre.

Meanwhile staff housing is also being look at with plans to demolish old houses and hospital is in talks with the National Planning Office for the project.


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Josephine Chandler

Yes, I was there in April, and that photo is current. The only improvement in recent years is the new TB ward in a separate building, which is OK but not enough beds.

Lindsay F Bond

Most heartening to see this announcement, hospital facilities at PNG's southwest that might mirror capacity of the hospital at Thursday Island and provision for staff to be accomodated with due dignity.

Ray Weber

Australia should offer to establish, staff and maintain a hospital at Daru to the same standard as the medical services in Australia. This would stop the need for PNG patients to cross the border into the Torres Strait and prevent the introduction of serious diseases into Australia. This would be practical AusAid assistance instead of wasting millions on useless projects.

Philip Fitzpatrick

If that photograph is current it doesn't look much different than 1970.

Peter Sandery

I seem to recall that in the early 2000's, the Ok Tedi Company through the government's Tax Credit Scheme spent a heap (can't remember how much) on re-furbishing the hospital which was run down then despite the Fly River Provincial Government receiving heaps of money, indirectly from the OK Tedi project. Once again, the reason for the hospital's and its patients' predicament is a Provincial Government that gives the hospital and the service it provides a low priority - like paying heaps of money to retain private law firms for questionable purposes - the reason why the former Governor and Administrator are awaiting sentencing on defalcation charges.
Whilst I can see the logic in AusAID being used to alleviate the situation - it will perhaps stop the movement of Western Province people seeking medical attention in the Torres Strait under the Border Provisions - if AusAID does fund the renovations, what sort of message is this sending up and coming administrators and politicians in the Western Province and elsewhere?

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