By Gary Hatigeva
A total of $3million from the recently passed 2018 National Budget has been allocated for the ongoing Primary Health Care Programme this year, being one out of two policy objectives to have the highest allocation under the Ministry of Health and Medical Services (MHMS).
This comes under the government’s Development Expenditures, which aims to improve health care services, while at the same time making these services more accessible to the rural areas.
MHMS was only allocated a total of $9million for its development programmes this year, but insiders stressed that with the limited allocation, the ministry has also been forced to set focus on areas they feel need the developments most, and Primary Health Care being one of the most important areas of focus.
With the Primary Health Care Objectives, they included two important phases, one of which is the Role Delineation Policy Implementation Plan, and the Delineation Policy implementation Plan, which was forecasted for this year, 2018, as phase two.
Out of the total $9million provision for government’s health development expenditure, another $3million according to the budget document is allocated for the improvement of health service delivery to all Solomon Islanders, with expectations for them to be in quality standards.
This $3 Million will go towards the refurbishment of the National Referral Hospital (NRH), and the upgrades of essential services, which are revealed to be ongoing government programmes from last year, and have fortunately been inserted as part of the new government’s top priority focus.
As highlighted in the budget’s activity summary, the allocations will also enable the Functional Tertiary Care equipment supplying quality services in place as defined by standards in the Role Delineation Policy.
Under its Medical Supplies and Logistics Development Programme, the Ministry on the other hand, pushed to ensure that all its national distribution and monitoring systems are strengthened as an ongoing programme, with an allocation of $1million for its development.
Meanwhile, another set of $1million each were allocated under the Development expenditures, for the Ministry’s Secondary Care Services Programme and the relocation of the National Referral Hospital (NRH).
The allocations are expected to cover for the relocation program to a much safer and secure location, which the government had already earmarked, at the same time, meet the redevelopment of the Tulagi, Kiluufi, and Kirakira Hospital, including the rebuilding of the Gizo Medical Store.
Having been an ongoing programmed, but unlikely to happen this year, part of the above allocation of $1 Million for the relocation programme, will also go towards site Feasibility Assessment and Confirmation, and so as service Plans, Functional Plans, Accommodation
The figures running between $1million to $3million though seemingly huge in respective views, those inside suggested are too small for even the forecasted development programmes, but said they are being asked to see that both their developments and implementation programs under the both the recurrent and development budgets are executed.
They added that the implementations and establishment of development programmes will continue but have been downscaled to suit their allocations.