A senior Acting Manager of Water PNG has expressed concern over the lack of proper cancer equipment and facilities needed to assist cancer patients in Papua New Guinea.
Wallis Pingin, made this remark after presenting two tickets to a cancer patient, Ruth Wiak, and her husband, to travel back to Kuinga after being left in Lae for near three months.
Ruth and her husband were not able to return home, and were living at Angau’s Cancer ward whilst waiting for assistance.
Ruth is from Morehead in Western Province. She had a stage 3 cancer on her left breast when she was first referred to Angau General Hospital from Kuinga hospital in May this year.
Ruth’s operation was conducted in April. Angau’s Radiation Oncology Registrar Dr. David Kundi, says when she first came to Angau, in May, they had noticed that the size of the tumor had increased and spread to her lungs. The cancer is now in its advanced stages.
Dr. Kundi explains that Ruth has been living in the ward with other patients after she was discharged from the hospital.
Ruth and her husband were not able to return to Kuinga, as they had no money. As a result, Dr.Kundi and the nurses at the hospital started writing letters to business houses in the city for financial assistance.
Lae’s Water PNG Acting Senior Manager, Wallis Pingin, says the company decided to help assist Ruth and her husband, paying for their travelling expense.
Most people in the rural areas face similar situations when it comes to seeking medical treatment.
Pingin, speaking from his own experience, said his wife had also been diagnosed with cancer and had to take her to the Philippines to receive medical care.
Pingin believes there are many similar cases in the country, where rural people are not able to get professional medical help. He believes, most people cannot afford to come to town to have access to basic medical treatment.
Ruth’s case is one of the many that brings to light the need to bring better health care services, as well as proper medical equipment into the rural areas of Papua New Guinea.