Prime Minister James Marape has thanked staff of the Health Department and all stakeholders in the Inter-Agency Taskforce for their work in managing the spread of COVID-19 in the country upon receiving the 2020 COVID-19 Response Preliminary Report.
The preliminary report was presented to PM Marape by the Secretary for Health Dr. Osbourne Liko during a briefing with the Inter-agency Taskforce of the National Control Centre (NCC) today.
The full report will be presented to Cabinet for endorsement and presented to Parliament when it resumes in April.
PM Marape told them that the Grace of God had kept the country safe thus far, but Government and the team at the NCC needed to step up with testing and prepare for any eventualities, especially with the mutated strain of the virus spreading across some countries.
Prime Minister urged the team to work together with the West New Britain Provincial Government and the West New Britain Provincial Health Authority to arrest the spread of the virus in the province.
He said the learnings from the response in West New Britain could then be used to prepare other provinces, not only to combat COVID-19, but also other epidemics and pandemics that may arise in the future.
Prime Minister Marape also urged the team to be wary of complacency, especially in the face of people not following the ‘New Normal’ guidelines.
Current statistics for PNG are 811 confirmed cases and nine deaths.