UNICEF keen to assist rural health in PNG

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Quoting RNZI on 12 January 2018

“The Head of UNICEF in Papua New Guinea says his agency will meet government officials to see how they can assist with rural communities that are struggling to access health care.

“Monjur Hossain’s comments come after a report that 24 children died in a remote part of Morobe province due to an unconfirmed illness.

“Mr Hossain said tests are being conducted to establish the causes of death but whooping cough and pneumonia were suspected.

“He said healthcare was in a dire state, particularly for remote areas like where the deaths occurred where it can take seven days to walk to the nearest city for medical attention.

“The situation had been made worse by a shortage of medicines and the departure of the local health worker.

“Over 60 percent of the aid force, the community health force, [is] closed because there is no health staff or the supplies. Recently because of the budget cuts and all this, the medical supplies are an issue here in PNG. Almost every is out of stock, particularly the essential drugs, antibiotics and things like this.”

“Monjur Hossain said he hoped to meet with Ministry of Health officials tomorrow and that UNICEF wanted to help.

“We need medical supplies, enough medical supplies and drugs and the money to transport support to go there. However we are trying to mobilise and that’s why I am actually calling on the National Department of Health about it and other partners.”

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Yours sincerely

Frank Short

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