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Millions for healthcare in the Pacific


Paul Hayes


8/08/2019 11:24:51 AM

The Australian Government has pledged $19 million as part of its ‘commitment to improving the health of Pacific populations’.

Greg Hunt
Federal Health Minister Greg Hunt represented Australia at this week’s World Health Organization (WHO) Pacific Health Ministers Meeting in French Polynesia. (Image: Ellen Smith)

Australia’s funding is aimed at range of initiatives, including tuberculosis (TB), infection control, childhood obesity, medical research and medicines testing.
 
‘The Government will invest $13 million in a significant drive to control and eliminate [TB] in South-East Asia and the Pacific,’ Federal Health Minister Greg Hunt said.
 
‘Of the $13 million, $5 million will be for intensive TB detection and treatment, while $8 million will be for important research into antimicrobial resistance and drug-resistant TB.’
 
Australia’s Pacific neighbour Papua New Guinea has one of the highest prevalence rates of TB in the world, with 30,000 new cases reported every year.
 
Minister Hunt represented Australia at this week’s World Health Organization (WHO) Pacific Health Ministers Meeting in French Polynesia, the first time Australia has attended the meeting as a full member.
 
‘The [Australian] Government will provide up to $3 million to place an infection, prevention and control adviser in both Tuvalu and Kiribati, a Chief Pathologist in Samoa, and place two advisers in Fiji to support infection control across the Pacific region,’ Minister Hunt said.
 
‘We are also providing an extra $1 million to expand efforts to reduce childhood obesity in the Pacific. This funding, through the Pacific Community’s Public Health Division, will support Pacific Ending Childhood Obesity regional priorities, such as physical activity campaigns and restricting the marketing of unhealthy food and beverages to children.
 
‘The Australian Government will also provide the McCabe Centre for Law and Cancer with $1.065 million over three years to develop tobacco control laws and policy in the Pacific.’



Greg Hunt Pacific tuberculosis



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