24th November 2020
ADI is proud to announce the launch of it’s 2019/20 annual report. It is a celebration of the work our staff and volunteers have achieved in the past year, from running clinical health patrols, to training rural health workers, to family planning and gender equity services – all the time reaching remote and vulnerable groups in PNG. All of this whilst in the face of COVID-19. Collectively, we have provided 40,000 clinical health services and public health education to 19,000 rural health community members and families.
In July 2019 we received our full accreditation grant from the Australian Government through the Australian NGO Cooperation Program – our strategic plan set us up to expand our existing work in Western Province and New Ireland and have expanded our impact to West New Britain. We also joined the Aerial Health Patrol team out of Balimo in Western Province with financial support from the PNG Sustainable Development Program (SDP). By August we had deployed a doctor into Balimo, followed in quick succession by a volunteer nurse and second doctor. In West New Britain, we signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the Provincial Health Authority and Provincial Government in November 2019, by January 2020 we had undertaken a safety review, secured an ADI base, deployed a program manager and identified volunteer doctors to rotate through the province during 2020.
The devastating arrival of the COVID-19 pandemic in early 2020, resulted in all ex-pat staff and volunteers being called home in March, and Australian-based staff and board meetings moving to remote working and virtual meetings. However, over time we have been growing our PNG staff base which meant that we have a skilled and resilient team on the ground to continue our goal of creating a healthier PNG, even in the midst of the pandemic.
As a health service organisation, we saw our role amidst the pandemic to respond swiftly, maximising our health impact and building long-term health security in rural PNG. We responded to calls from the PNG National Department of Health, and Provincial COVID-19 Task Forces. We designed new programs, innovated our delivery mechanisms and formed new partnerships. ADI distributed almost 65,000 pieces of PPE to frontline workers as well as providing much needed medical equipment to rural clinics such as pulse oximeters, digital blood pressure meters, otoscopes and stethoscopes. Our patrol teams reached 10,000 local community members with 72 hours of COVID-19 education and 190 PNG health workers and hospital staff were trained via webinar. We are privileged to be part of PNG’s health system and the collective response to COVID-19, whilst also keenly maintaining health services that protect the lives of Papua New Guineans in all the other areas of health need.
ADI wishes to thank the thirteen volunteer doctors, nurses and midwives who travelled to PNG this year contributing to 273 days on outreach health patrols, and to our volunteers at home who have stepped up to offer remote support in the face of COVID-19. Our work is made possible to the generosity of our donors who have facilitated our growth as an organisation. In particular, we would like to show our appreciation to the Australian NGO Cooperation Program (ANCP), the New Ireland Provincial Government and the West New Britain Provincial Government for their support in continuing to improve access to healthcare in PNG.
This report is a tribute to the hard work of all those involved in ADI’s mission – upholding the universal right to health care by working with local partners to provide and strengthen health services in rural and remote communities.
Thank you for your interest in our work. Wherever you are we wish you safe and healthy end to 2020.
Dr Klara Henderson