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© Jodi Bieber

Papua New Guinea

Papua New Guinea has some of the worst rates of sexual and gender based violence in the world

With some 836 dialects spoken, around 12 percent of all the world’s languages can be found in Papua New Guinea (PNG).

North of Australia, the country of more than eight million people is located on the eastern side of the world's second largest island - New Guinea.

Despite its idyllic setting, PNG has some of the worst rates of domestic, sexual and gender-based violence in the world. It also has one of the highest rates of HIV/AIDS in the Pacific region, and a tuberculosis (TB) rate that has been declared a "major public health emergency".

Médecins Sans Frontières / Doctors Without Borders (MSF) first worked in PNG in 1992. The country is prone to tidal waves, volcanic eruptions and earthquakes, to which we have also responded.

MSF is working to improve access to screening and treatment for tuberculosis (TB) in Papua New Guinea.

A major public health emergency was declared after 30,000 new cases of TB were identified in 2016.

TB is now the fourth biggest cause of death for hospital admissions in PNG, and the leading causes of death among HIV/AIDS patients.

In collaboration with the national TB programme, MSF is focusing on improving diagnosis and treatment services in the capital Port Moresby - where an estimated 25 percent of all TB patients live - as well as through mobile community clinics across the country.

Nationally, there is a high number of patients currently not completing their treatment, due to poor access to remote areas and a limited follow-up system. MSF is developing a decentralised model to treat these patients closer to home.

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