7 Jun 2005

PNG Government moves over apparent bureaucratic hold ups in provision of health services

8:13 pm on 7 June 2005

The Papua New Guinea Government's Chief Secretary, Joshua Kalinoe, has launched an investigation into the ongoing shortage of drugs in hospitals.

The Health Secretary Dr Nicholas Mann has been recalled from a national health workshop in Kimbe to explain the continuous shortage.

The Post Courier reports that Mr Kalinoe says while hospitals are reporting shortages of essential drugs, there's nearly seven and a half million US dollars waiting to be spent by the Health Department.

The Finance Department Secretary Thaddeus Kambanei is to conduct an investigation into the administrative process that the Health Department uses to procure these essential drugs.

Mr Kalinoe says he expects a final report by Friday this week.

The Chief Secretary says health and education are priority sectors of the government, as reflected in the budget allocations.

He says the well-being of the people is paramount and he wants the drugs shortage resolved as quickly as possible.