A shortage of faculty in Papua New Guinea (PNG) affects every aspect of care and training at Port Moresby General Hospital (PMGH) and the University of Papua New Guinea (UPNG) School of Medicine and Health Sciences. Medical schools in resource-limited settings are often plagued by surges in student-to-teacher ratio; the volume and quality of research is lacking; and efforts to improve patient care are limited.
BIPAI and Texas Children's Hospital, the Government of the Independent State of Papua New Guinea and ExxonMobil (XOM), undertook a comprehensive needs assessment process in 2012-13 to identify gaps in maternal/child health and public health. This would be the basis of a multi-year Public Private Partnership with UPNG and XOM to build pediatric and Public Health faculty capacity at UPNG.
BIPAI, through its Texas Children’s Global Health Corps of physicians, seconded one Med/Peds physician and one Public Health Specialist (PhD) to UPNG, substantially increasing and improving its baseline faculty. A robust M&E framework has been developed to capture pertinent data in teaching, training and improved care outcomes. Additionally, one PNG public health learner will be supported for a two year MPH program at the University of Texas School of Public Health in Houston, Texas.
Through long term faculty attachments to UPNG, the ability to increase the number of residents that may be retained as the next generation of faculty can ensure sustainable growth and capacity at UPNG and teaching hospitals throughout PNG.