MoPHA Structure Queried

Local leaders do not wish to see the Etep Rural Hospital in Tewai-Siassi, Morobe Province, close its doors due to funding constraints.

Local MP, Dr Kobby Bomareo, queried whether the Morobe Provincial Health Authority has a structure that includes rural health facilities.

The Etep Rural Hospital in Morobe’s Tewai-Siassi district recently announced that it was scaling down operations due to lack of funding.

Etep caters to over 19,000 people.

Dr Bomareo visited the rural health facility, where he said two main questions arise when a facility is on the brink of closure.

“Have they prepared the budget properly, so that it’s appropriated well or the budget is ok but there’s a drip, where it’s escaping from the system itself,” he stated.

Dr Bomareo further said the Morobe Provincial Health Authority structure is unclear, especially on the position of church-run rural health facilities.

“Where do the church-run health facilities come in, in the structure. That is very important,” he outlined. “Do they rely on Christian Health Services funding or will they have anything from the provincial health authority?

“I would say more than 60 percent of services in the rural settings are run by churches and provincial health authority should consider them in between; consider them in terms of consumables or funding for infrastructure, logistics, all these things.”

The Tewai-Siassi District Development Authority gave K160,000 to Etep Rural Hospital in 2020, and this year purchased and donated an ambulance.

The DDA plans to allocate more than K50,000 this week to ensure that normal services continue.

Dr Bomareo, however, outlined that they are yet to receive an acquittal of previous funding given to the hospital.

(Locals at the Etep Rural Hospital at Tewai-Siassi district, Morobe Province)

Carmella Gware