The restoration of health facilities in Hela province has gained momentum in recent weeks with work on three sub-health centres underway.
ExxonMobil PNG, operator of the PNG LNG Project, is investing K2.3 million to rebuild and equip three local health centres in PNG LNG project areas in Hela Province as part of its on-going support to invest in infrastructure improvements and support earthquake affected communities.
The Mananda and Para sub health centres are managed by the Evangelical Church of PNG (ECPNG) while the Juni sub health centre is staffed and operated by National Department of Health through the Hela Provincial Health Authority.
An assessment conducted by Hela Provincial Health Authority and ECPNG identified the critical needs for health care facilities in the province following the earthquake.
The existing Mananda and Para sub health centres are currently being repaired and an additional staff house is being built for the Para sub health centre.
At Juni a new sub health centre encompassing five wards is being built on the site of the old clinic. Located within the Komo-Magarima district it will service a population of 5000 people.
The Juni sub health centre is a Level 2 health facility per the PNG National Health Services Standard but was unable to meet the health service delivery requirement with the old building and equipment. With the new building design it will expand its services to provide ante-natal and post-natal care, inpatients wards, emergency and dispensary rooms, a drug storeroom, health promotions, utility and procedure rooms, volunteer counselling and testing of HIV and AIDS, with modern sanitation and shower facilities and hot water system.
Local tradesmen were contracted to repair and rebuild the local health centres ensuring the infrastructure improvements and earthquake restoration work also generated income for local families.
ExxonMobil PNG Executive Director of Production, Dinesh Sivasamboo said there is still much work to be done for communities to recover and the company was pleased to continue support to its neighbours most impacted by the earthquake in Hela Province.
“It is vital that basic health services are restored in the communities. Healthy populations mean people participate more actively in the social and economic growth of their communities,” Mr Sivasamboo said.
ExxonMobil PNG in partnership with other organisations is also continuing to provide support for the restoration of education services, community food gardens and assisting the government to build roads and bridges for Hela and Southern Highlands Provinces that were destroyed during the disaster.