There are close links between Australia and Papua New Guinea in the health sector. Australian aid programs have provided significant support to the PNG health system, and a number of Australian-based welfare and charitable organisations provide support and services in PNG.

Health in Australia

Australia maintains a universal health-care system underpinned by broad-based taxation and government investment in three levels of healthcare, supported by private sector actors including insurers, practitioners and operators.

The Medicare system provides fee-free or subsidised healthcare, with all taxpayers required to contribute to the system through a levy on income taxes. While the Federal Government is a significant player in funding the system, services are delivered primarily through hospitals which are operated by the states and territories, charities and private operators. Local councils also play a role in the provision of health services in some areas at the community level.

Health System of Papua New Guinea

Mother Stephanie with baby Edwin at Susa Mama health clinic, Port Moresby General Hospital, PNG. (Photo Ness Kerton/DFAT)

Provision of health services is one of the big challenges for Papua New Guinea’s government. It relies on a network of local level health clinics, with hospitals at the provincial and national level providing higher level services. Rugged environments and the high cost of service delivery can mean limited availability in many areas, and a lack of qualified personnel is a factor in the limited availability. The government relies on aid from international donors, and the support of development partners including churches, NGOs and volunteers to deliver services in many areas. PNG has improved performance against a number of health indicators: life expectancy at birth has increased from 55.6 in 1990 to 62.8 in 2016. But there is still substantial progress to be made, with communicable diseases such as malaria, tuberculosis and HIV/AIDS still prevalent, and an outbreak of polio in 2018.

Links & Resources

Papua New Guinea Department of Health

World Health Organisation – Papua New Guinea

Australia Department of Health

Medicare Australia

 

 

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Emerging Leader Participants

Nicholas Papas - Architect - Lowy Institute

Nicholas Papas

Architect

ELD Year:
2018

Country:
Australia

Current Location:
Sydney

Nicholas Papas is a full-time architect based in Sydney who has extensive experience with research, technical support and volunteering in Papua New Guinea. He is studying a postgraduate degree by research looking at sanitation in Barakau village in conjunction with the community development organisation Sago Network. In addition, Nicholas holds Masters and Bachelors degrees in Architecture from the University of New South Wales.


Sam Davies - Security Manager, Australasia - International SOS and Control Risks - Lowy Institute

Sam Davies

Security Manager, Australasia - International SOS and Control Risks

ELD Year:
2018

Country:
Australia

Current Location:
Sydney

Sam Davies is the Australasia Security Manager for International SOS and Control Risks, and is responsible for overseeing operations for clients in Australia, New Zealand and the Pacific including PNG. He works with clients in business, non-government organisations and the Australian government regarding security and contingency planning. Sam has previously worked in the humanitarian sector and he holds a Bachelor of International Relations from the Australian National University in Canberra and has also studied in the US and Jordan.


Martin Yala Timothy - Secretariat Manager, Global Fund (PNG) - Lowy Institute

Martin Yala Timothy

Secretariat Manager, Global Fund (PNG)

ELD Year:
2018

Country:
Papua New Guinea

Current Location:
Port Moresby

Martin Timothy is the Secretariat Manager with the Global Fund PNG based in Port Moresby. He supports the daily operations of the Fund office. He has previously worked with the US Embassy in Port Moresby, KPMG, Coffey International and the Consultative Implementation and Monitoring Council. He holds a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology and Community Development at UPNG, and a Masters in Development Practice from the University of Queensland.


Mikaela Seymour - Medical Doctor - Lowy Institute

Mikaela Seymour

Medical Doctor

ELD Year:
2017

Country:
Australia

Current Location:
Sunshine Coast

Dr Mikaela Seymour is a Medical Doctor, working as a Principal House Officer in General Surgery at Sunshine Coast University Hospital. Graduating from Griffith University in 2015 with a Masters of Medicine, she is currently undertaking her masters of Surgical Sciences at the University of Edinburgh. Mikaela was previously selected for the Queensland Rural Medical Education Placement to Western Province PNG, and has continued to volunteer in Papua New Guinea, returning five times since 2015 to volunteer as a Doctor in Training. Mikaela is current chair of the Junior Medical Officers Forum of Queensland, and previous Deputy chair of the Australasian Junior Medical Officers Committee. She currently sits on the Medical Workforce Advisory Committee and Medical Schools Liasion Committee to the Office of the Chief Medical Officer and the Hospital Accreditation Committee for Queensland Pre-vocational Medical Education. Dr Seymour is an associate lecturer with the University of Queensland, and a Medical Educator with Queensland Rural Medical Education. She also serves with the Australian Army as a Captain in the 2nd Health Support Company, Gallipoli Barracks

@mik594

Patrick Koliwan - Medical Doctor - Lowy Institute

Patrick Koliwan

Medical Doctor

ELD Year:
2017

Country:
Papua New Guinea

Current Location:
Port Moresby

Dr Patrick Koliwan is passionate about improving health care in Papua New Guinea. He has served in rural outposts and now works in urban settlement communities tackling some of PNG’s biggest challenges including tuberculosis and maternal mortality. He was a participant in the Australia-PNG Emerging Leadership Dialogue in 2017.


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Australian Doctors International - Lowy Institute

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Australian Institute of Tropical Health and Medicine - Lowy Institute

Australian Institute of Tropical Health and Medicine

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Development Policy Centre - Lowy Institute

Development Policy Centre

The Development Policy Centre (Devpolicy) is a think tank for aid and development serving Australia, the region, and the global development community. It undertakes independent research and promotes practical initiatives to improve the effectiveness of Australian aid, to support the development of Papua New Guinea and the Pacific island region, and to contribute to better global development policy. The centre is based at Crawford School of Public Policy in the College of Asia and the Pacific at The Australian National University. In conjunction with the University of Papua New Guinea, the centre runs the annual PNG Update conference in Port Moresby, and has a wide range of active research projects and partnerships in Papua New Guinea. It also publishes frequent analysis on PNG on the Devpolicy Blog.

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Femili PNG

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