NRH reportedly without ambulances for the past six months

Dear Editor,
THE SIBC reported last night, Tuesday, that the National Referral Hospital (NRH) in Honiara has no ambulances as both of the hospital’s ambulances were awaiting maintenance and had been out of service for six months.
Quoting the SIBC report in full it said:-
“Ambulances at the National Referral Hospital in Honiara have been out of service for six months, reports a senior staff member. Transport Manager Isaac Ramo told SIBC News today both of the hospital’s ambulances were awaiting maintenance.
“ Mr Ramo said without those vehicles the hospital now used two buses and a Land Cruiser to transport patients and staff. He said sometimes transport employees had to borrow an ambulance from the fire department.
 Mr Ramo said even before the current mechanical issues the ambulances and equipment inside were outdated. “Nothing works now,” he said. “Everything is old, some things should be thrown out. We need new things to make them function.”
“The National Referral Hospital Mr Ramo said meeting hospital transport demands would require four ambulances, additional Land Cruisers and buses, and 3-ton trucks. But, he said, these vehicles cannot be purchased with the annual transport budget of $215,000SBD.
“Hospital administrators could not be reached for comment before this story was published.”
 I don’t know whether ‘Take My Hands’ charity trust could help locate one or more ambulances from generous donors in New Zealand but I will enquire.
In the event of being able to acquire a second hand ambulance the cost of shipping such a vehicle could be very costly, I suspect, and it might be more practical if a generous partner donor of the Solomon Islands such as the Government of the Republic of China (Taiwan) or the Government of Japan could step up to aid the transportation difficulties handicapping the NRH and patients there.
The NRH is a vital institution and it is quite sad that the hospital is reportedly so desperately short of transportation.
I really do hope something good will eventuate to solve the concerns expressed by Mr Ramo.
Frank Short

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