As the nation’s capital continues to record an increase in COVID-19 Cases, with 7 positive cases recorded just yesterday (25/07/20), another looming disaster is taking place at the National Referral Hospital.
Port Moresby General Hospital Emergency Ward is currently under immense stress as COVID-19 tests take place within the emergency ward.
The ward is in chaos as patients with life threatening injuries and medical conditions wait hours to be served.
Eye witness reports have confirmed that Doctors and Nurses are refusing to attend to Emergency cases until the individual is first tested for COVID-19. The current emergency theatre that deals with emergency cases has been closed also due to fears of COVID-19 amongst Doctors and Nurses.
EMTV has learnt that for some emergency cases, this is leading to death.
Appendix cases that went to POMGEN this week were told that the theatre was closed and the staff on duty were not sure whether the surgeon would be able to attend to the cases. One patient’s appendix eventually burst while waiting to be served.
It leaves the question on what exactly is happening at the emergency ward at PomGen?
In a leaked letter addressed to Port Moresby General CEO and Management, Nurses at the Emergency department refused to work in the emergency department stating that COVID-19 Protocols in place were non-effective.
The Nurses stated that initial procedures of patience testing at the front triage before being moved to Rita Flynn or the emergency ward for further treatment were not carried out.
The nurses of the emergency department stated in the letter that their resolution was to fumigate all of emergency department, establish proper facilities for covid-19 patients, all nursing staff to be at home for indefinite period and a response by management.
POMGEN in a social media post has responded to the nurses leaked document stating that Port Moresby General Hospital Chief Executive Officer, Dr. Paki Molumi and acting Director Medical Services Dr. Kone Sobi met with the Emergency Department Doctors and Nurses at 7.30am this morning to get all staff together as a team to face the challenges after 2 of their staff members tested positive for COVID-19 while treating their sick patients who were also positive for COVID-19.
Molumi further challenged the ED staff not to be swayed away by COVID-19 as the normal non-COVID emergencies will kill more patients.
“Our challenge is to continue to attend to all normal emergencies to save more lives at the same time ensure we and our patients are safe from COVID-19”
EMTV understands that emergency department staffs are not in full PPE equipment and only those carrying out COVID-19 testing are in the full PPE attire, meaning there is uncertainty of not knowing who has COVID-19 and can lead to nurses and doctors to be fully exposed to the virus and other patients in the emergency ward.
But One thing is for sure, the current procedures in place at Port Moresby General Hospital emergency ward is costing the lives of people, as fear of COVID-19 is causing more deaths than the virus itself in Port Moresby and the Country.
EMTV News has requested for a response from acting secretary and deputy controller Dr Paison Dakulala on the current situation at Port Moresby General Hospital and is still awaiting a response at the time of publishing this article.