The Solomon Islands Referral hospital's severe shortage of doctors is creating pressure for each units to function properly.

Dr Kenton Sare says there should be nine doctors rostered on for each shift but the emergency department has to make do with two, as there are only four doctors in total, and they all work six days a week.

He stated that other parts of the National Referral Hospital in the capital Honiara are also under extreme pressure, such as the labour ward.

Dr Sare says each month there are enough babies born at the hospital to fill a school roll.

“They have about one, two, three birthing suites. At the moment they have closed down one birthing suite to try and keep mothers who have given birth while waiting to go to the post-natal ward. And you have mothers giving birth in the first-stage room, you have mothers giving birth in the corridor.”

Dr Kenton Sare says at a conservative estimate, the emegency department treats more than 150 patients every day with only two doctors.