Bring in foreign health experts – Motuopua’a

The newly merged Ministry of Health (MOH) should hire overseas health experts to manage the hospital and tackle ongoing challenges in the health sector. 

This was the proposal of the Medical Council Chairman, Motuopua’a Dr Aisoli Vaai, who said he continues to be concerned at “internal squabbles” within the Ministry. 

“I would suggest – given this (merger) is something new – bring experts from overseas to run our hospital. At the same time have the understudies observe and learn from them. 

“Also the Ministry should minimise the number of assistant chief executive officers," he said. 

Motuopua’a also urged the newly appointed Minister of Health, Faimalotoa Kika Stowers, to be brave and do the right thing.

“If the people are not performing at the top level, I would sack them without hesitation. I would ask for their resignation and terminate their contract. Also the Minister should value the workers more than the top advisors.” 

He claimed the former Minister of Health, Tuitama Dr Leao Tuitama, was caught in the middle of such a difficult situation.

“What the new Minister should do is keep the politics out and do the right thing. 

"But if she wants to smooth sailing, my own personal advice is find a new management team.

“She will hear the old advice, the same old rigmarole, the same old thing, that everything is well from the old team," he added. 

But interim M.O.H. Director General, Leausa Take Naseri in response to the concerns said if it was his personal opinion than it is his right. However, if he spoke as a medical counsellor, then he should have expressed his views during the Commission of Inquiry into the M.O.H. and the National Health Service. 

“But if he gave that as a medical counselor than why did he not express this view during the inquiry. There were also representatives of the Medical Council in the inquiry. But they cannot politicise,” said Leausa. 

However, the Medical Chairman has described the Commissions of Inquiry as a waste of time and money and he opted not to attend.

“If I recall correctly, this is the fourth of fifth Commission of Inquiry launched into the Ministry of Health and the National Health Services.  And the recent the Commission of Inquiry was a waste of time and waste of money. I didn’t bother to attend it."

He said there was another inquiry in 2006 which cost the Government $30 million tala in funding. 

“I heard the recent inquiry was also in million, yet money could have gone to better use for health care development."

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