07th April 2017 The Minister for Health Hon Dr Saia Piukala commissioned TongaHealth’s office extension at Vaiola Hospital on Wednesday, 5th of April, 2017.
Hon Dr Piukala told the gathering that he was delighted to see the completion of the refurbishment of Tonga Health’s office.
He hoped that the extension would help produce greater outputs from the staff as the organization continue to accomplish legal requirements directed by the Health Promotion Foundation Act 2007 and their role as Secretariat to the National NCD Committee as well as coordinating the implementation of the National NCD Strategy for the Prevention and Control of NCDs 2015-2020.
Hon Dr Piukala stated that since the establishment of the organization they have continuously granted aid to different groups throughout Tonga to help with the prevention of NCDs.
“Tonga Health has given out grants totaling $629, 000 to almost 500 groups in Tongatapu, Vava’u, Ha’apai, ‘Eua and Niua, up to June 2015. In the financial year 2015-2016, Tonga Health gave out grants amounting to $267, 954, with almost $500, 000 left to be distributed in 2016-2017,” he said.
According to Hon Dr Piukala from July 2016 to March 2017 Tonga Health has given out grants amounting to almost $600, 000 for health promotion activities.
The organization also funded surveys as well as research to provide information for health promotion initiatives as well as providing evidence for interventions. Surveys funded by Tonga Health included the Baseline and Impact Surveys of Anti-tobacco campaign 2016 that was conducted by the University of Sydney and Tonga International Academy, Tonga’s Population Census 2016 conducted by the Statistics Department amongst others.
CEO for Tonga Health Mrs Seini Filiai stated that the total cost of the construction work was $322,532.05 and was funded by the Tongan Government and Tonga Health investment. The construction work was awarded to Kramer Ausenco Tonga.
She said Tonga Health now has enough space for its staff and a new conference room which will be used for board meetings.
Mrs Filiai said Tonga Health now has 13 staff – seven graduates, four diplomats and one NCD Implementation Manager. The organization also has two Australian volunteers.
Tonga Health’s operations and grants program is funded by the Tonga Government, the Australian Government via DFAT, and the SPC.
Tonga Health was established through the Health Promotion Foundation Act 2007 with a mission to prevent and reduce harm from non-communicable diseases (NCDs). The organization’s vision is for a healthy Tonga where everyone is responsible for promoting health and shares the benefits of a healthy population.
Issued by the Ministry of Meteorology, Energy, Information, Disaster Management, Environment, Climate Change and Communications