ExxonMobil PNG Limited, operator of the PNG LNG Project, has handed over the new Para Sub-Health Centre, staff housing and an ambulance to the Para community in the Hela Province.
The development represents over one million kina investment by PNG LNG and will provide improved healthcare for communities close to the Hides Gas Conditioning Plant.
The Sub-Health Centre will provide, inpatient services, midwifery services and pre-natal care to hundreds of local women. With the new facility, a labour ward and an ante natal care area will now allow women to deliver babies and recuperate where as previously they were sent home straight after delivery.
The new fully kitted ambulance will make transportation of referral cases to Tari Hospital safer ensuring better healthcare for the community.
The sub-health centre is outfitted with a solar power unit to cater for electric equipment such as large vaccine fridges, and has in-built ablution facilities. Office items and equipment have been donated from PNG LNG for use in the newly constructed office.
Para Sub-Health Centre is operated by the Evangelical Church of PNG (ECPNG) under its Health Service Division and serves a population of over 5,000 from Hides, Para, and Laite villages.
The new health infrastructure replaces the existing sub-health centre which had been in operation for thirty-nine years.
ExxonMobil PNG Managing Director Andrew Barry said the Para Sub-Health Centre celebrates what can be achieved when industry and the community work together. He said the Centre would not have been possible without the hard work and support of ECPNG, Hides Special Purposes Authority, Hides Gas Development Company and the local community.
Local tradesmen were contracted to construct the sub-health centre, ensuring that opportunities for engagement remained locally focused.
ExxonMobil PNG invests in community initiatives to promote economic growth and improve the standard of living in Papua New Guinea.
“History shows us that healthy populations are more likely to participate actively in the social and economic growth of their communities and their country,” said Mr Barry.
“ExxonMobil PNG is committed to investing in sustainable health projects in Papua New Guinea to help address the health challenges affecting project areas,” added Mr Barry.
Health Secretary for Para Sub-Health Centre Keith Kedekei said the long term sustainability through a public partnership approach was important for the Para Sub-Health Centre development.
"We thank ExxonMobil PNG and the many community partners involved. I urge the local community to take care of this health facility which will help serve us," Mr Kedekei said.
Since the start of Production in 2014, ExxonMobil PNG has invested approximately K27.9 million in health initiatives, across PNG LNG project areas.