BY GRACE AUKA-SALMANG
K1 million has been presented to water service provider Eda Ranu to connect clean safe, water to Laloki Psychiatric Hospital in Central Province.
Health Minister Elias Kapavore presented a cheque for K1 million to Eda Ranu finance general manager Arava Tarakatau Ravu yesterday for work to start next week.
“The government has come good to ensure that water going to and through to the Laloki Psychiatric Hospital is clean and safe.
“Such hospital is one of the important facilities and it cannot be isolated because all the health facilities are important,” Mr Kapavore said.
Chief medical officer and health standards executive manager medical standards Dr Goa Tau said that for 19 years, the hospital did not access constant clean safe water for its patients, staff and their families.
“For the past 19 years, they have been using bore water which is now very contaminated and it has taken time to address this issue.”
Dr Tau said the Health Department, the hospital and Eda Ranu had signed a memorandum of understanding last month to connect water to the hospital.
He said the signing had to be done because the hospital is located in Central Province and Eda Ranu is a Port Moresby city service provider so the department had to come to an understanding with Eda Ranu to connect.
“Previously, there was Eda Ranu supplied water but it has been on and off and eventually got disconnected due to illegal connections done by nearby settlers at Laloki.
“So the whole pipe system became very bad which resulted no proper water supply to the hospital.
“This resulted in the usage of the bore water which contained bacteria that caused infections and was contaminated with bacteria such as E Coli, Salmonella Tyhi plus other parasites,” Dr Tau said.
He said the bore water was referred to as “hard water”, meaning it contained bacteria which caused kidney stones.
Stones in the gall bladder is not healthy.
Former health minister Sir Puka Temu visited the hospital recently and directed the hospital staff to keep the hospital closed until proper water supply had been restored.