PNG hospital closes after staff walk out

6:59 pm on 23 June 2016

Mount Hagen General Hospital in the Western Highlands of Papua New Guinea has closed after doctors and nurses walked off the job.

The Health Secretary Pascoe Kases said he was advised that the hospital staff were unhappy with the Western Highlands provincial health authority.

The authority is reported to have moved patients to hospitals and health centres in other provinces after the walkout.

This was after a court order preventing a mass resignation by hospital staff.

Mr Kases said a legal process was under way to address the concerns of the combined health unions in Western Highlands and the strike demonstrated disrespect for that process.

In March, the health professionals presented a petition alleging corruption at the authority and staged a sit in at the hospital.

An official investigation found no problems, but it's reported that dissatisfaction with the health department's response to the doctors' concerns had prompted the strike.