The Premier of Western Province in Solomon Islands says the building of a new hospital in Gizo is a big development for the country's health system.
Some of the old hospital's facilities were damaged in the 2007 tsunami, and damage to nurses housing led to a shortage of staff.
But a ground breaking ceremony was held last week for a new 60-bed hospital, which is being paid for with 17 million US dollars from the Japanese government.
The Premier, George Lilo says the new hospital will become the country's second referral hospital, providing services for Western, Choiseul and the south west of Isabel province.
He says this will alleviate problems within the health service.
"We have difficulties in terms of addressing patients' care, even drugs, we run out of drugs every now and then, because we don't have enough spacing, we don't have enough staffing. So I believe with the completion of the new hospital, we should be able to provide both primary and secondary services to the patients."
George Lilo says the new hospital is expected to be built in 18 months.