29 Apr 2014

Warning not to downgrade PNG's Nongo hospital

9:25 am on 29 April 2014

The MP for Rabaul in Papua New Guinea has cautioned against downgrading the functions of Nongo referral hospital in his district.

Dr Allan Marat has urged the national government and East New Britain provincial government not to turn their backs on the historic town.

Rabaul remains an important hub for both the province and the islands region, despite being written off by governments after destructive volcanic eruptions in 1994.

He says previous efforts to remove Nongo hospital's referral functions didn't work.

"It just happens to be the most ideal location for the whole New Guinea Islands region, that hospital. There is discussion about removing it from where it is in Nongo in Rabaul to some remote area back in the Toma area, in the backyard of East New Britain province. But people in Kokopo, they still send their sick patients to Nongo hospital."

Dr Allan Marat says Nongo's wards are being renovated.