Dealing with death in PNG’s health system | By Tweedy Malagian

It’s 3:40am and l had just returned home from the Pom Gen Hospital. I was there with my Sepik Son Allen since 6:00pm yesterday.

The Emergency room was full to capacity so Allen joined the waiting list…

While waiting just outside the Emergency room a young couple from Aroma rushed in with their baby with the father cradling his baby in his arms. They went further into the ward. After 30mins the young father walked out without his baby…crying! He walked out the Emergency gate and cried all the way out the main hospital gate. A few minutes later the young mother walked out crying, hugging her baby tightly.

I couldn’t help it. Tears started flowing freely down my cheeks. I really wanted to walk over to her and hug her but l held back. Everyone around were speechless because they all felt her pain. Then l was asked if l could help her make a phone call. I walked over and all l could say was, “Sorry”. I asked her for the number and she called the numbers, one by one in between sobs. I almost lost it there. I fought back my own lump in my throat and dialed the number but the number did not ring so I asked her for another number. By then her hubby had come back and said someone was coming to pick them up.

While crying the young mother said she brought her baby to one of the suburban clinics for her baby’s immunisation injection. The baby was given 3 injections…she never woke up from then on. When they realized something just wasn’t right they rushed her to the Pom Gen Hospital only to lose their baby girl.

She was only 3 months old…😢😢😢

What is wrong with our Health System???

3 comments on “Dealing with death in PNG’s health system | By Tweedy Malagian

  1. Dr Saweri Jr

    Our Health System is not only broken, it is forced to operate on an underfunded, understocked, semi-professional, ad hoc basis. Covering over 300 000 patients each whilst dealing with demoralised staff and expecting services to be perfect, or even average. But the truth is Papua New Guineans are numb to the outrage. The people should be up-in-arm, protesting cuts to the Health Budget, in other countries there have been nationwide riots, in PNG there is a weak social media cry, we need the country to march into Parliament and make them listen, force their silly, money-grubbing, fat-bellied, pig-faces, to;
    1. Improve staff morale, through better funding, training, future pathways.
    2. Increase funding to the university to remunerate medical professionals to teach.
    3. Improve primary school and highschool teaching in English, Maths and Science.
    4. Measuring medical students by a world standard and getting them to train in an Australian or New Zealand setting (quite impractical at the moment).
    5. Put Health 1st in the budget and allow it to get the biggest share.
    6. Target health indicators for improvement, and then, actually improving them, instead of just saying it year after year.
    7. Equip hospitals with proper equipment, not cheap equipment.
    8. Listen to the Clinicians!
    9. Improve the quality of nursing care and their standards.
    10. Improve procurement and distribution services.


  2. Charmaine T Anderson

    Going on 43 years in September and yet the health system is not a priority in the budget. How many more causalities will it take before the government of the day starts taking this issue seriously?? Hospitals are ill equipped! Take care of the health workers (nurses and doctors) who try their utmost to serve their country and yet get bugger all from their government because the fat pigs are taking themselves overseas for medical attention as if they were bloody born in hospitals in Singapore, China or Australia! Someone remind them all that they took their first breathe of life in a PNG hospital so start giving back to these hospitals!


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