The Ministry of Health and Medical Services (MHMS) has this week received six (6) new Toyota vehicles, 4 land cruisers, and two RAV4s from the United States of America to support health services in Solomon Islands.
Health Permanent Secretary Mrs. Pauline McNeil in receiving the vehicles thanked the government and people of the United States for the financial assistance that has enabled the purchase of the vehicles and the World Health Organization for procurement, shipment, and delivery to the Ministry of Health.
“These vehicles will contribute greatly towards our work in planning and coordination of operational and logistics in the delivery of health services including for administration, ongoing response to COVID-19 and integrated roll out of COVID-19 vaccines and routine immunization program in Honiara and the Provinces. Logistical support is a critical component of the health system to ensuring services are delivered” Mrs. McNeil stated.
“Based on the needs as assessed, recipients of these vehicles will include Helena Goldie Hospital, Honiara City Council, Lata Hospital, Taro Hospital, and the Ministry of Health,” outlined Mrs. McNeil.
She urged hospitals and departments that are listed to receive the vehicles to take good care of them and more importantly use it to serve well the health needs of the people.
WHO Country Representative Dr. Howard Sobel said that the WHO is pleased to have successfully procured, shipped, and delivered the vehicles to health and thanked the United States for the funding support to the Ministry of Health through the WHO SI Country Office.
“Part of our support is to work with the Ministry of Health to identify gaps, challenges, and issues and mobilize resources to address these. Hence the delivery of these vehicles is part and parcel of our ongoing support to the Ministry of Health in its efforts to address challenges in coordination and logistics in the delivery of health care services,” said Dr. Sobel.
Mr. Russell Comeau, Chargé d’Affaires a.i. for the U.S. Mission to Solomon Islands who was also present at the handover of the vehicles said, “United States is very proud to finance such important assets that will enhanced health service delivery, including supporting COVID-19 response and vaccine rollout.”
He went on to say, “The United States has pledged $280,000,000 for the World Health Organization for the calendar year 2022, and from this, USD$500,000.00 (SBD4.1) million was allocated to the Solomon Islands WHO Country Office to support COVID-19 response efforts and health system improvement.”
“We are indeed pleased to see these vehicles handed over today, and we look forward to health workers across the country to start using these vehicles to serve the people,” stated Mr. Comeau.