BY ALEX DADAMU
THE Ministry of Health and Medical Services has over the past 5 weeks has enhanced its emergency arrangements aligned to the Ministry’s National Health Emergency Plan which has demonstrated by the establishment of the National Emergency Operation Centre.
This was according to the Minister responsible for the Ministry of Health and Medical Services (MHMS), Dickson Mua when updating Prime Minister Manasseh Sogavare on the PM’s visit to the National Referral Hospital (NRH) on Monday. Health Minister Mua said the established NHEOC is the “Engine Room” of the MHMS.
“This is the “Engine Room” of the MHMS where all emergency operations are controlled, coordinated, communicated and managed.
“It is a dedicated information centre, where plans and operation are discussed and staged, problems are resolved and alignment of plans and new strategies are generated and cleared,” Mua explained.
He revealed that to date, a total number of 2,067 COVID-19 health advocators have been trained in all Provinces. He added that 179 trained NRH staff are currently on the roster for full activation around the clock.
“A total number of 2,067 COVID-19 health advocators have been trained in all Provinces to date. There is 179 trained NRH staff currently on the roster for full activation around the clock. Of this, 22 doctors are triage doctors. Isolation Doctors and Nurses trained are 50 and trained Emergency department nurses account for 70.
“There is the SOLMAT (Solomon Islands Medical Assistance Team) team consisting of 9 staff on a monthly roster basis who are capable to be deployed at short notice. Minister Mua furthered that a 14 room quarantine home for staff, who may encounter COVID-19 case has been furnished and is now available at the NRH compound.”
In the meantime, Prime Minister Sogavare when speaking after his visitation of the NRH and the COVID facilities this week acknowledged the work done by the Ministry of Health and Medical Services (MHMS) as the Government is taking all necessary and proactive measures to fight against the COVID-19 pandemic.
“To all our frontline workers in the Ministry of Health and Medical Services throughout the country, and our other frontline workers in other ministries and disciplines in the country, you have the appreciation and thanks from your government and a grateful nation for your role in preventing and in preparing for COVID-19 should it enter our country.”
The Prime Minister expressed his gratitude to the Permanent Secretary, Mrs. Pauline McNeil, the Senior Executive of the Ministry, in particular, the team in the National Emergency Operations Centre (NHEOC) and other leaders within the National Referral Hospital under the leadership of the Hon. Dickson Mua, MP.
“To you all, let me say this, you are our first and last line of defense. My deepest respect to you,” he said.
Prime Minister Sogavare expressed his “full confidence” to the Minister of Health and Medical Services, Hon. Dickson Mua and the Permanent Secretary for Health, Mrs. Pauline McNeil and her Senior Executive, the National Health Emergency Operational Centre, Senior Doctors, Nurses and all the staff and officers of the Ministry of Health and the National Referral Hospital who are managing the government’s response to this evolving public health emergency.