by Bridgette Komatep – EM TV, Port Moresby
Every year, the School of Medicine and Health Sciences at the University of Papua New Guinea (UPNG) takes in only 60 scholars and graduates only 45 doctors.
This is not enough to cater for the ever growing population of 7 billion people.
The only clinical school, the Port Moresby General Hospital, is forced to keep the number this way, due to limited training facilities and infrastructure. This was revealed at the memorandum of agreement signing between the Port Moresby General Hospital and the School of Medicine and Health Sciences today.
After almost 50 years since the inception of the Port Moresby General Hospital and UPNG’school of Medicine and Health Sciences, a memorandum of agreement was signed to officially spell out the roles and responsibilities in training medical professionals, as well as the funding aspect.
Port Moresby General Hospital Chief Executive Officer Grant Muddle explained that matters relating to training will be met by the UPNG’school of Medicine, while issues relating to the hospital will be met by the hospital.
Since 1966, Port Moresby General Hospital and the UPNG’school of Medicine and Health Sciences operated on a common understanding – to train medical professionals.
However, over time, demand for more doctors and nurses were not met as Port Moresby General Hospital needed the necessary manpower and infrastructure to cater for this. These issues were highlighted by Professor John Vince, director academic for the medical faculty at the Taurama Campus.
Similar sentiments were shared by School of Medicine and Health Sciences Executive Dean Professor Nakapi Tefuarani and the professor of Internal School of Medicine, Sir Isi Kevau.
It has been three years since the contracts for the new workforce were done, but they are yet to be implemented.