July 31, Herd Base, Gulf Province – Papua New Guinea
“For me, it is satisfying to help someone who is not able to get access to medications in the nearest health center, or not able to go into town or the city to get medical supplies.”
Eliuda Haive, 30, from a mixed parentage of Madang and Gulf provinces is a field Health Extension Officer with the International SOS: an internationally renowned health and security service organisation attached to the Project’s operational base, the Herd Base along the Purari River in Gulf province, 90.41 km (56.18 mi) north-west from Kerema Town.
He shares that he has always been passionate about helping villagers in and around the Project area whenever they seek assistance.
Due to the remoteness of the villages in and around the Project area, villagers often visit Herd Base to acquire medical attention.
“We get about 5-10 patients a day from the nearby villages and the upstream villages as well,” Eliuda said.
From his five years of experience as a HEO in rural based communities, he developed the skill of communicate effectively with locals.
“It is very important to know exactly what is wrong with a patient; through effective communication, in order to prescribe the right treatment,” he explained.
Eliuda has been using this skill to better understand what the locals need and assist them accordingly.
Since May this year, he was engaged as a field medic (field HEO) with a survey team, who survey the flora and fauna, and the waterways in the Project area.
Eliuda is a quiet character who is at most times can be seen at the tail of the teams’ trek, just like an alpha wolf overlooking the pack, he moves gently and cautiously behind everyone; making sure there is instant professional medical assistant should the need arise.
“Since the start of the survey, there has not been any major cases on the field,” he explained with a sigh of relief.
When asked if he also faces the same challenge as most colleagues working away from home; missing family and friends, Eliuda said this is not the case for him.
“I’ve gotten used to being away from home, since most of my engagements are rural or field based,” he said with a smile.
Eliuda is always passionate about his role, and along with his medical colleagues on the field, they continue to provide medical support to Project site staff and communities along the Purari River.