11 Jun 2005

PNG health minister denies claims six hospitals short of supplies

7:11 am on 11 June 2005

Papua New Guinea's health minister, Melchior Pep, has denied claims that six hospitals in the Highlands region are going without basic medical supplies.

The Post-Courier newspaper reports hospitals in Goroka, Lalibu, Kundiawa, Mount Hagen, Mendi and Wabag have either run out, or are running low, on antibiotics, painkillers and anaesthetics.

However Mr Pep has told Parliament that "there was no serious shortage, and people had got to get the facts straight".

The acting chief executive of the Goroka Base General Hospital, Doctor Pumoso Warima, says they don't have surgical gloves to deliver babies.

Doctor Warima says they don't have soda lime used to filter oxygen in their life-support equipment.