BY DESMOND RAHE
DOCTORS and patients at the National Referral Hospital (NRH) in Honiara now have access to the latest imaging technology.
The new endoscopy room was among the 2016-refurbishment projects, completed with equipment donated by Australia and New Zealand.
Endoscopy enables doctors to look through the throat, food pipe, stomach, and large intestines to detect diseases and this allows surgeons to perform necessary treatment with a greater level of accuracy.
Head of Surgical Department, Dr Rooney Jagilly said the new facility will greatly enhance the quality of care delivered to patients.
“The new endoscopy facility will be more safe, private and comfortable for patients and staff.
He said training and capacity building in this area has developed a lot over the past five years so it is only fitting that the hospital has a purpose built area for this service.
“I am glad to say, our nurses and doctors have been trained by specialists on this particular area,” Dr Jagilly said.
Senior physician, Dr Elizabeth Wore said, “I am very excited about the new facility and equipment that are have been installed. Endoscopy services will be delivered with better quality of care to our patients.”
Dr Wore said the new endoscopy practice means patients will no longer have to travel overseas for this particular procedure as they now have this vital equipment available at NRH.
The NRH endoscopy team noted that many cases of bowel and stomach they see are quite advanced and late to treat because of late presentation.
They are now actively advising the public to seek medical attention if you have any of the following signs and symptoms: changes in bowel habits such as constipation or diarrhoea that lasts more than four weeks or have persistent abdominal discomfort, such as cramps, gas or pain.
The medical and surgical clinicians at the NRH will now be able to perform endoscopy procedures by using the newly opened facility.
Dr Steve Aumanu said that the endoscopy unit was evidence of the strong partnership between the Governments of the Republic of China (ROC) and the Solomon Islands through the Ministry of Health and Medical Services.
“NRH with its limited resources has shown that through a coordinated approach with the different development partners governments, NGOs and other organizations from the private sector, that programs like this can benefit provincial government and ultimatly help our local communities.
“We want to strengthen this partnership and develop it into the future.”
NRH Chief executive officer, Dr Steve Aumanu acknowledged the Taiwan government for its continued generous support of the Solomon Islands government medical services.
The Republic of Taiwan provided funding of almost SBD$500,000 to renovate the facility to allow doctors to perform endoscopy procedures.
Other parties who contributed to the refurbishment of the facility, by providing equipment or training of local staff were US Surgeon Dr Eileen Natuzzi, and the Australia and New Zealand Gastroenterology International Training Association (ANZGITA).
Dr Aumanu further acknowledged the ROC for the continued support and contribution to NRH including the funds for the endoscopy unit.
“Many project like this have been funded by the Republic of China Government and this is also a another landmark achievement for the National Referral Hospital.”