CHIEF Justice Sir Gibbs Salika has called for the proper screening of the qualifications of foreign doctors before being given certificates to practice in the country.
During the ceremonial sitting to honour the late Justice Nicholas Kirriwom at the Waigani Court House yesterday, Justice Sir Gibbs urged the Government to ensure that the criteria was included in the PNG Medical Registration Act to protect the lives and welfare of the people and the practice of medicine in the country.
Justice Kirriwon passed away at a hospital in Port Moresby last week.
“Justice Kirriwom died alone in the hands of foreign medical workers,” Justice Sir Gibbs said.
“I am concerned for the welfare, safety and health of the people of our country who choose to get treated in clinics or hospitals owned and run by foreign medical practitioners.
“He (Justice Kirriwom) was there on his own, without his wife or children, and died a lonely death with no one to witness his death or how he died.” He reminded the PNG Medical Board members who decide on the certification of medical practitioners that they are “dealing with the lives of human beings”.
“Why is the board and Investment Promotion Authority allowing foreign private hospitals and clinics to mushroom in Port Moresby and Lae?” Justice Sir Gibbs said.
“Are the PNG medical practitioners not qualified and worthy of establishing private medical clinics, supported by banks through loans and by the Government just like the Paradise Hospital, which is owned and operated by PNG nationals?
“Has the PNG Medical Board given foreign medical workers occupational English test so that Papua New Guinean patients can communicate with them when they find themselves in the foreign medical facility, with multiple choice questions to answer and clinical examinations?”
The National / PNGHealthWatch
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