Transfield Services working to eradicate Malaria on ManusOn a recent trip to Manus, Kate Munnings, Chief Executive Logistics, Construction and Consulting, ANZ, attended the inaugural Manus Province Malaria Alliance steering committee meeting.
This joint initiative is being funded by Transfield Services and the Manus Provincial Government with the aim of eradicating Malaria in Manus by 2030.
Malaria has serious health and economic impacts on Manus with 126 cases per 1,000 people.
Treatment is also impacted by a black market in malaria drugs (ie. malaria drugs being stolen and replaced by panadol) and the lack of accessibility to health care.
Manus, with a population of approximately 65,000 has one operating hospital which is supported by two Community Health Posts and a number of Aid Posts, 40 per cent of which are inoperable.
Kate said: “Transfield Services' funding is contributing to preparation of a bankable feasibility study so the project may secure funding from the Gates Foundation or the World Bank.”
As a Public Private Partnership it is a unique model. The steering committee, which is made up of Provincial Government officials, scientists, medical practitioners and Kate (who spent nine years working as a registered nurse) are overseeing this activity.
This work is also being supported by World Vision.
There are six work packages which are the focus of the feasibility study. In addition to the funding, Transfield Services is also providing in kind support for the feasibility study which should be completed by June 2015.
“Last week the steering committee appointed its Chair (Dr Dan Evans) and Deputy Chair (Oka Nunga Administrator Manus Provincial Government). We agreed on reporting and communication protocols and our goals for the next 10 months. We hosted a panel discussion over a traditional dinner and visited the remote village of Horan. Horan has effectively eradicated Malaria by removing all potential breading grounds,” said Kate.
Nahua Rooney, the first female parliamentarian in PNG and is very influential in the Manus community and Dr Otto Numan (CEO Provincial Health Authority) both expressed their sincere gratitude at Transfield Services contribution to this effort. They said it would result in long term benefits for the people of Manus.
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