On April 29, 2019, the Phebe Hospital Board of Trustees, authorities of the Ministry of Health senior staff and administration met in an emergency session to brainstorm on the current challenges, confronting the institution in Suacoco, Bong County.
According to the Phebe Hospital administration, the facility has been encountering challenges that range from electricity outages, provision of drugs and remittances of the government financial contribution.
At the head of officials from the Ministry of Health were Minister, Dr. Whelimina Jallah, Deputy Minister of Health and Chief Medical Officer, Dr. Francis Kateh, as well as Deputy Minister of Planning and Development A. Varfee Tulay.
During the first of the official discussions, the Medical Director of the Phebe Hospital, Dr. Jefferson Sibley, gave a powerpoint presentation that highlighted most of the challenges and the state of the hospital’s finances.
After his presentation, Dr. Sibley also informed the gathering that on many occasions, owing to delays in the delivery of the needed drugs, patients are asked to buy their drugs at the various pharmacies in Gbarnga City.
He also added that some delays in paying vendors for services created problems for the institution, which sometimes led to the delays in the procurement of fuel for the generators.
As of the solar panels installed at the hospital intended to enhance power supply; Dr. Sibley said that the installation does not not provide the kind of electricity needed to do the required services.
He however pledged the medical and administrative support to work with the County Health Team to ensure efficiency and productivity in the country’s health delivery system.
In a special statement, Dr. Jallah called on the staff and administrators to begin thinking outside the box to bring the services to all ailing Liberians.
“I really don’t want to be hearing about doctors and nurses working with flash lights and candles to render medical services to our people,” Dr. Jallah said.
She then stressed the need for the staff to work with the County Health Team in a drive that will be proactive and responsive in the health delivery system. She also underscored the need for the total involvement of the church, as previously done over the years, that helped buttress government’s effort to providing efficient health delivery services.
Minister Jallah pledged the current government’s support and cooperation with faith-based organizations to deliver the medical services.
A. Varfee Tulay called on the staffs to consider as critical the presentation and delivery of reports regarding the operations of the Phebe facility.
“Our government is in the business of ensuring health services are provided to our people in all parts of our country as we at the ministry are ever determined to work with all health stakeholders to ensure an effective health delivery services,” Minister Tulay said.
Lutheran Bishop, Dr. Daniel Jensen Seyenkulo, recommended setting up a small team that will be charged with the responsibility to ensure a detailed report is prepared and submitted to the Ministry of Health and stakeholders of the Phebe Hospital.
Bishop Seyenkulo also stressed the need for the health stakeholders to work with the church and faith-based entities to ensure that the required services are rendered to Liberians.
He also extended gratitude to Minister Jallah and team for their timely response to the emergency meeting with the Phebe Hospital.
Bong County Chief Health Officer, Dr. Adolphus T. Yeiah, called on the medical staff and administrators of the hospital to get involved in other income generating activities that will support continuous medical services at the facility.
“I want to state that as we begin to make use of our land for agricultural activities, such as oil palm and cocoa,” Dr. Yeiah said.
Minutes after the presentation of the financial and managerial breakdown of the operations of the hospital, the Chairman of the Board, S. Tornolah Varpilah, underscored the need for an effective collaboration between the Phebe Administration and Ministry Health.