The staff of Port Moresby General Hospital (PMGH) will receive the much talked about Astra-Zeneca COVID-19 vaccine by Monday next week starting off with the CEO of the Hospital Dr Paki Molumi.
The 8000 doses of Astra-Zeneca vaccines arrived in the country from Australia this week which aims to vaccinate all frontline health workers.
Dr Molumi will be the first person out of the 1600 staff of PMGH to receive the vaccine followed by other team leaders down the line.
“The vaccines will begin with myself as the CEO of this hospital, my directors, the managers, senior doctors, senior nurses and senior staff of the corporate service of this hospital.”
Dr Molumi said this order of vaccinating the senior staff of the hospital can give assurance and confidence to the rest of the staff to do the same.
“The vaccine will protect them, and even if they get the disease, the severity of COVID-19 infecting them and killing them will be less.”
“That will give them the confidence to continue to stand in the frontline and provide service for the health care of this country.”
He said this is not only about protecting the staff of PMGH, but to show other health workers and the rest of the country to prepare to receive vaccines which will also help the hospital by putting less stress on the hospital staff.
“When you put less stress on our services, we will continue to stand up and provide normal services.”
“Apart from TB, we malaria, we have diabetes, we have heart disease and other life style disease that we have to mange.”
Dr Molumi said in the past three weeks, the hospital has diverted a little bit away from the other services in the hospital and focused on COVID-19 but with the vaccine, they hope to focus also on other services in the hospital.
Meanwhile the hospital has been carrying out seminars to advocate to some of the staff who may still have doubts about the vaccine following misleading information on social media platforms about the Astra-Zeneca vaccine.
“As management if we do not try our best to clear those doubts and educate them on the need and the importance of this vaccine, then they will not come on board.”
“That is why the management has taken this approach to educate each individual in this hospital so that they volunteer to get the vaccine.”
Dr Molumi said, the hospital vaccination programme is not mandatory and it is the staff personal choice whether to be vaccinated or not, however he hopes the entire hospital staff is vaccinated.
Dr Molumi believes 40% of the PMGH staff will be the first ones to be vaccinated by next Monday.