DEAR EDITOR, Of all the forms of inequality, injustice in health is the most shocking and inhumane – Dr Martin Luther King.
Monday, 5 February 2018, A report in today’s news bulletin broadcast by Radio New Zealand International cited the dilapidated state of the Manuopo rural health clinic and the anger expressed by the speaker of the Temptu Provincial Assembly over its condition.
This is what was reported (quote); “A provincial leader in Solomon Islands is calling for the closure of a dilapidated health centre in the remote Reef Islands.
“The speaker of the Temotu Provincial Assembly, Johnson Levela, said the Manuopo health centre is “overtly rundown” and has been neglected by the national government for over 15 years.
“Mr Levela is calling on the Ministry of Health to close the centre and find a better venue for a health care facility.
“Johnson Levela said Reef Islanders deserve better from the government.
“The provincial speaker also asked what had happened to $US1.3 million in funds he understood had been set aside for the rehabilitation of rural health care centres such as Manuopo.
“He called on government to urgently address the issue.”
The Prime Minister, the Hon. Rick Hou, made an election promise to deal with the question of the run-down state of the country’s rural health clinics.
It was some 2 years ago that the Permanent Secretary of the Solomon Islands Ministry of Health and Medical Services revealed the then true situation of the dilapidated and run down state of the 317 or so rural health clinics mentioning that many had been built in the early Colonial era.
It is understood that several rural clinics have already been closed in the Western Province.
I previously highlighted the condition of the Manuopo clinic and had hoped there would have been some work to restore it but from Mr. Levela’s comments apparently not.
The rural medical clinic at Tatamba in Isabel Province and the one at Panueli on Savo Island are similarly run down and the health care needs of more than 15 000 people in the two communities affected by the non-functioning facilities.
It is my hope that the Solomon Islands Government will soon give priority to the prevailing and unsatisfactory condition of all the rural health clinics in the expectation that many can be rebuilt or effectively renovated and the community health services returned to the people as their fundamental basic human rights.