15 Jun 2017

PNG hospitals face severe drugs shortage

4:44 am on 15 June 2017

One of Papua New Guinea's largest hospitals says it hopes a drug shortage will be resolved in the next few weeks.

The country has faced a shortage of critical supplies for weeks after the government's drug-buying tender lapsed.

A spokesperson for Angau Memorial Hospital, in the country's second-largest city Lae, Zaningo Theo, said he understood the government was close to resolving the tender problem.

At Angau, Mr Theo said some patients have been forced to get drugs from local pharmacies, but his hospital had not been badly affected.

He said it was a different story in remote areas, where some health centres have been forced to close.

"We face a lot of hardships there and it's a flow down that's affecting the supply of drugs in the rural health centres."

"But for the major referral hospitals, yes we're facing drug shortages but not to the extent where it's very serious."

He said he hoped supplies would return to normal by the end of the month.