PNG Health Department Addressing Medical Supply Shortage

Responding to widespread concern by doctors and members of the public on the critical shortage of medicine in public hospitals

By Gynnie Kero

PORT MORESBY, Papua New Guinea (The National, June 09, 2017) – The Health Department has assured the people it is acquiring medicines through various sources to replenish stocks in hospitals so that health services flow smoothly again.

Health Secretary Pascoe Kase said they were aware of the current shortage of medical supplies and important medicines and were working to resolve the problem quickly.
Steps being taken now are:

  • Airfreighting from overseas some of the most urgent medical items in the next 10 days;
  • Discussing with provincial health authorities the use of any available funds to buy medicine from local pharmacies and suppliers for use in hospitals; and,
  • Pushing the delivery of orders placed with suppliers in the past two months.

Kase assured the people that he would be giving the medicine shortage crisis the “highest priority” in the next few weeks.

He was responding yesterday to widespread concern by doctors and members of the public on the critical shortage of medicine in public hospitals.

People are being forced to buy medicine in private pharmacies because stock in hospitals has dried up.
Kase said there should be no reason for patients to buy medicine which should be supplied by the health department.

“Over the past two months, a large number of orders have been placed for the urgent delivery of medicines and other medical supplies,” he said.

“A number of these supplies had been delivered and distributed.

“However, a disturbing quantity of orders have not been delivered despite a number of efforts to encourage supply.”

Yesterday, Kase and officials met representatives of suppliers to find out the reason for the delay.
Problems they identified included communication issues and concerns over payments being delivered on time.

He repeated his comment earlier in the week that the procurement process was a complex issue.
The 550 doctors who are members of the National Doctors Association are concerned about the shortage of medicine in medical centres they work in.

They relayed their concerns to the association this week to take up with the Government.

The National
Copyright © 2017 The National Online. All Rights Reserved

Rate this article: 
Average: 3 (1 vote)

Add new comment