Papua New Guinea HealthCare Worker Manual – Dr Michael Burke

HealthServe Australia: Bringing health, hope and wholeness


from Luke’s Journal 2021 | Fire in the Belly 2021 | Vol.26 No.1

Photo: HSA in PNG

Papua New Guinea is our northern and nearest neighbour. Australian Christians partner with Papua New Guinean Christians in many healthcare ventures to bring health, hope and wholeness to local communities. HealthServe Australia, with the support of many CMDFA friends, has partnered in the third edition of the Papua New Guinea (PNG) HealthCare Worker manuals.

Our first CMDFA national executive officer, Dr Clifford Smith OAM, and his wife Judy, served the people of Papua New Guinea for many years. Cliff also was the initial executive officer for HealthServe Australia. Cliff and Judy valued health, service, equipping, compassion and wholeness. Together in partnership with PNG health workers, they created a unique resource for healthcare workers in rural and remote PNG – a textbook of unparalleled utility. Cliff and Judy oversaw the first two editions, the second printed in 1996. After this, a newer, more up-to-date third version was needed. Cliff handed over the task to an able team of new partners including HSA, Baptist Union PNG, Christian Health Services PNG, PNG National Department of Health and AusVoc Educational Publishing.

Judy Smith with the third edition books.

We acknowledge the generous support of Australian Aid. HealthServe Australia played a leading role in collaboration with Dr John Oakley (HSA and CMDFA) as senior editor and Gerri Koelma (HSA) in monitoring and evaluation. 

While Dr Smith mostly wrote earlier editions, this third edition has a comprehensive range of PNG writers. The manual has two parts – a first part that addresses issues of prevention and health communication and a second part addressing treatment and health management issues. The 2020 printing of fifteen thousand copies of the complete two volumes of the manual has been a significant milestone. Unfortunately, Cliff was not able to see its final publication, passing in 2015. 

HealthServe Australia aims to promote wholeness for all partners – physically, emotionally, and spiritually. Our programs seek to bridge the health gaps in diverse communities so that those we serve can embrace their potential in life.

Thank you to CMDFA people who have generously responded to bring health, hope and wholeness. 

Please visit our website to learn of further opportunities to engage in a wide range of programs and partnerships: 

HealthServe Australia (HSA) is a Christian health and development agency that builds sustainable health programs globally. It aims to build a community’s capacity for meeting its own health needs, through partnership. Here are some reflections from a February 2020 trip to Java (before COVID halted so many mission journeys), an update regarding the PNG Healthcare Workers Manual, and an invitation…

Dr Michael Burke    
Dr Michael Burke is Executive Officer of HealthServe Australia 

Would you like to contribute content to Luke’s Journal?  Find out more…