THERE has been a shortage of condoms and contraceptive drugs in PNG's Ialibu Hospital and its 15 aid posts in the past three months, district health manager Joe Pea says.
“At the moment, we do not have any condoms or the most commonly used type of conceptive injection, Depopovra,” he said.
“We currently implement the eight plans of the Marie Stopes programme with the support of their staff in the province. We also have our own programme in the hospital.
“Safe motherhood programme alongside the immunisation clinic.”
Pea said there were only four health workers based in the hospital and while they were all trained in demonstrating safe contraceptive measures, “we do not have the capacity to send them out into the villages”. National AIDS Council acting director Tony Lupiwa said: “If there is a shortage, then the people in the provinces have not informed the Health Department.
“We are in charge of distributing condoms nationwide for the purpose of preventing Sexually Transmitted Infections (STIs), Gonorrhoea and Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV).”
He said condoms were distributed to all provinces from their base in Port Moresby at the direction of the department.
“The Provincial Health Authority chief executive officer would normally inform us of any shortage so that we can arrange for the supply,” he added.
Lupiwa noted that the last delivery of condoms to replenish stocks was between December and January and 7,000 condoms were distributed to the provinces.
He points out that the department should raise awareness on fertility and condom usage for safe family planning, especially with a fast growing population.
Next : LACK OF FUNDING SEES PNG BEHIND IN ITS EFFORTS IN ELIMINATING HIV & AIDS