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New triage system to improve emergency care at Gerehu General Hospital

A new triage and patient flow system has been launched in the Emergency Department (ED) at Gerehu
General Hospital (GGH). The system will help identify patients with urgent healthcare needs, so that they
can be prioritised for assessment and treatment.
Dr Ovia Bue, Specialist Medical Officer and Director of Emergency Medicine at GGH ED, said the new system
will help improve the quality of care provided to emergency patients.
“Triage allows us to identify patients who need immediate treatment. The ED is now colour-coded, such
that the patients requiring resuscitation are taken to the red area. Patients with other care needs may be
directed to yellow and green areas. This simple system will help ensure that we can provide the best
possible care to the greatest number of patients,” said Dr Bue.
“All patients who attend GGH ED will now be registered and triaged on arrival. Under the new system,
emergency doctors will see patients in order of urgency, not time of arrival.”
The new system has been developed by the World Health Organization, Médecins Sans Frontières and the
International Committee of the Red Cross, but has been adapted for Papua New Guinea by a team from the
Australasian College for Emergency Medicine (ACEM).
Visiting from Melbourne, Australia, ACEM President, Dr Simon Judkins, attended GGH ED to see the new
system in action.
“I’m delighted to be visiting Gerehu General Hospital to see first-hand how Dr Bue and his team are
working to improve care for emergency patients in Port Moresby. Implementing the new system has been a
collaborative project between emergency physicians and nurses from Australia and PNG, and I am proud
that our organisation has been able to support it,” said Dr Judkins.
The implementation of the new system is part of an emergency care strengthening project funded by the
Australian Government through the PNG-Australia Partnership. With the support of an Australian
Government Friendship Grant, the triage system will also be implemented at Mount Hagen Provincial
Hospital later this year.
President of the PNG Society of Emergency Medicine, Dr Gary Nou, acknowledged the support of ACEM and
the Australian Government in assisting GGH ED to implement the new system.
“We are very excited to be working in partnership with our colleagues and friends from Australia,” said Dr
Nou, a Specialist Medical Officer at GGH. “This collaborative project will help us to provide timely and
quality care for our patients. It is an exciting day for Gerehu General Hospital.”
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