Category Archives: PRESS RELEASE

Health Minister Dr Waqainabete opens new water project in Naitasiri.

The Minister for Health and Medical Services Dr Ifereimi Waqainabete officially opened the new water project at the Nabaitavo village in Naitasiri last Saturday which has brought much relief to the villages to access safe and clean water.

This project was initiated as the people in the Nabaitavo village were exposed to the outbreak of typhoid disease few weeks ago and the need for the installation of water tanks and water seal toilets for the village became inevitable.

The joint effort between the community and Central Division health team of the Ministry of Health and Medical Services together with Ministry of Rural Development and the Itaukei Affairs has been instrumental as the disease has been contained and the risk of further emergence of the disease in minimized.

Hon. Waqainabete while conveying his appreciation to the villages for their hard work, also welcomed the commitment of the health officials who have worked tirelessly for the timely completion of the much needed water accessibility to maintain proper hygiene and sanitation in the village.

“This is great contribution from the community and I am proud of the health officials for being available during the festive season to successfully complete the project”, Dr Waqainabete said.

Typhoid is a water borne disease therefore access to safe and clean water should remain priority for the people and the Health Ministry will make every effort with its development partners to address such issues.

Furthermore Minister Waqainabete during the Talanoa Session advised the villagers to prioritise and practice healthy lifestyle behaviors that will eventually reduce the burden of diseases and patients should visit the health facilities early to allow immediate diagnosis and treatment which will reduce the complications and the negative impact of the diseases.


Health Ministry will further strengthen health services.


New strategies to deliver improved and efficient health services to all Fijians must be implemented and as such appropriate planning needs to be adopted.
This was the challenge laid down by the Minister for Health and Medical Services Dr Ifereimi Waqainabete while addressing the Senior Managers of the Ministry at Holiday Inn.
He further said that health services continues to demand for innovative ideas to address patient needs therefore a vibrant and robust health system needs to be established to counter such calls.
“What we did in the past is okay, it worked but there is a call for change now and we need to change strategically to quickly capture the expectations of the society and deliver accordingly,” said Dr Waqainabete.
The two days meet is expected to assist and motivate Senior Managers to act on their vision (Leadership, Change, and Continuing Profession Development) to encourage and help them to see their weakness and overcome the obstacles to pursue the Ministry’s vision of “A health population”.
One of the other issues raised was the call for professional development to ensure the staff is competent in their profession.
This will enhance their knowledge and continue to make meaningful contribution to the team to be more effective in the workplace.





From Left: Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, WHO Director General and Hon Dr Ifereimi Waqainabete, Minister for Health and Medical Services



GENEVA, SWITZERLAND 34 technically qualified members of the WHO Executive Board is Meeting for its 144th Session on Thursday 24 January 2019. The two weeks meeting will consider a wide range of health issues including the WHO Operation Budget, Global Health Issues and the Implementation of the 2030 Sustainable Development Goals. Fiji is the only Pacific Island Country represented in the Executive Board which provides further leverage for the country to enhance our voice at the global platform.

In his opening remarks following the Director General’s opening remarks, Fiji’s Head of Delegation, the Hon Dr Ifereimi Waqainabete, Minister for Health and Medical Services congratulated Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus for his leadership and achievements in particular on addressing the Non Communicable Disease (NCD), Nexus between Climate Change and Health and Health Reforms which is a priority for the Pacific. Further he reiterated the need for the Pacific Island Countries health personnel to be equipped with skills and knowledge to enhance their capability to battle this issue thus called on the DG to strengthen WHO’s internship Programme for Pacific countries.

Fiji congratulates the DG and the secretariat in its efforts to enhance the fight against NCDs which is a major challenge in our region in the Pacific and is speaking on behalf of the Pacific Island Countries. 

We would like to call on the DG to maintain the effort on strengthening the internship programme for our young and vibrant health work force. In this regard, Fiji aligns itself to the proposed resolution (A71/B/CONF./1) on Reform of the Global internship programme discussed at the 71st World Health Assembly. We wish to inform that building the capacity of our future leaders in our respective countries and the current reforms on the internship programme, specifically the assistance and support to developing islands nations internship programmes improves equity in knowledge capability and enhances better interaction and access to WHO and its initiatives.

Climate change and health nexus is a major concern and the Pacific is a testimony of this emerging dilemma.

The Hon Dr Waqainabete is accompanied by Dr Eric Rafai and had the opportunity on the margins of the Executive Board Meeting to meet with  Senior Executives of WHO including the former and the new WHO Regional Director for the Western Pacific.

Fiji is represented in the Executive Board for the first time in the five (5) Western Pacific seat in addition to Australia, China, Japan and Vietnam. This is also Fiji and Vietnam’s third and final year in the Executive Board for its three year term and two new candidates for the Western Pacific is expected to be named for the next cycle.

The annual Board meeting is held annually in January where the members agree on the agenda for the World Health Assembly in May and the resolutions to be considered by the Health Assembly. The main functions of the Board are to implement the decisions and policies of the Health Assembly and facilitate its work.

The Board meeting will close on Friday 1 February 2019.