BY GRACE AUKA-SALMANG
Female students at UPNG School of Medicine and Health Sciences, 3-Mile Campus will soon see the construction of a 40-bed dormitory worth K8.7 million.
Following the launch yesterday by Australian High Commissioner Jon Philp, he said the project was supported by the Australian Government as part of its PNG-Australia Partnership Incentive Project which is expected to be completed by next year 2023.
“Such a project means that more women can access medical courses and live safely and comfortably and also to see more women graduates serving their communities across the country.
“We are proud to support UPNG as it aspires to become a self-governing university by 2025.”
He said the project aims to transform the aging infrastructure by improving the infrastructure designs of the past to make it suitable for accessibility to the requirements and safety of the study of people with disabilities, appropriate privacy and important departments of social engagement and study.
Dr Francis Hualupmomi from the Department of Higher Education, Scientific Research and Technology (DHERST) said the PNG government highly appreciates this partnership with the Australian government through the incentive fund to achieve the aims to strengthen teaching, learning and research in PNG.
Department of National Planning and Monitoring Secretary Koney Samuel said the health indicators are quite alarming, with the doctor-to-patient ratio standing at one in 30,000.
“It is a challenge for the government to bring this ratio down by 2030 and would like to see one doctor treating 10,000 patients.
“As Secretary I am still very concerned and we cannot do this alone and support like this from the Australian Government is very essential for us to address the shortage of healthcare workers,” did he declare.
The executive dean of the school, Professor Nakapi Tefuarani expressed and thanked all the friends of the medical school for their support and the start of the construction of the female dormitory is no exception.