Link: Pacific Islands Report
Pacific Islands Development Program, East-West Center

With Support From Center for Pacific Islands Studies, University of Hawai‘i

Samoa Health Sector Buildings Renovated With Aid Funds
$4.2 million provided by NZAid, AUSAid and World Bank

By Unumoe Esera

APIA, Samoa (Talamua, Jan. 28, 2013) – Nurses and health professionals in Samoa can deliver better health care services with the upgrade now completed on their old buildings which have been given a new facelift.

The two buildings are known as the Ministry of Health Professional Development and Credentialing Center for Nursing, Midwifery and Allied Health Professionals and the Nurses Hostel.

The entire project cost $9.8 million tala [US$4.2 million] and was funded by AUSAid, NZAid and the World Bank.

According to Prime Minister Tuilaepa Lupesoliai Sailele Malielegaoi, who delivered the keynote address, the project was first submitted in 2008 and approved by Samoa’s developing partners in 2009.

"In January 2010, Tinai and Gordon Associates was awarded the design and plan of the whole project and supervision at the sum of WST$539,000 [US$228,370] and Ah Liki Construction Limited in December 2011 for WST$9.3 million [US$3.9 million] to undertake construction with the total cost of the project at WST$9.8 million," said Tuilaepa.

The Australian and New Zealand High Commissioners, Dr. Stephen Henningham and Nick Hurley were present at the opening ceremony and officially handed over the keys to the buildings to the Minister of Health Tuitama Dr. Leao Talalelei Tuitama.

His Excellency Nick Hurley who has ended his term as New Zealand High Commissioner to Samoa was privileged to present the keys to the first building to the Minister of Health as his last of act of duty and stated how honored he was to have served Samoa.

Dr. Stephen Henningham also acknowledged the improvements made to Samoa’s health system and proudly handed over the keys to the second building to Tuitama.

Tuilaepa shared the historical account of the nurses building which is said was originally the home for senior registered nurses and was later turned into a teaching and educational facility to train nurses. The building he said has undergone several refurbishments over the years. In 1995 it was renovated by the Australian Government and improved to include science and nursing laboratories which was then used to teach nursing at tertiary level for the Faculty of Nursing of the National University of Samoa in 2005. The building is said to have been built some time in the 1950s.

The new buildings contain multi-purpose rooms for conferences and workshops, science laboratories and a new hostel intended to support new nursing graduates undergoing orientation.

"The hostel I am told is a modern state of the art construction and can be an additional relief centre for cyclones as well," said Tuilaepa.

The hostel space allows accommodation for 50 females and males.

The Prime Minister advised the Ministry of Health employees who would be moving into their new headquarters and residing at the

hostel to take good care of the buildings and also thanked NZAid, AUSAid and the World Bank for their financial assistance.

"I thank the Governments of New Zealand and Australia also the World Bank for these sincere developments. To those who will be using these facilities, be responsible and accountable caretakers," he said.

Invited guests, which included Members of Parliament and CEOs, toured the new buildings after the cutting of the ribbon for both buildings.

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