Public health and Covid-19 in Papua New Guinea

Healthcare in Papua New Guinea

Healthcare in Papua New Guinea is slightly below average in a worldwide comparison.

Probably the most important indicator that can be used to summarize the efficiency of all measures is general life expectancy. In other words, the theoretical age that a newborn child could potentially reach today. At the moment, this age in Papua New Guinea is 62.9 years for men and 68.4 years for women. For comparison: worldwide life expectancy is about 5.7 years lower (men: 68.9 / women: 73.9 years).

A total of 60.31 USD per inhabitant is spent annually on health measures at state expense. This corresponds to approximately 2.3 percent of the gross domestic product. Internationally, this amount averages 1,103.03 USD (~ 9.8% of the respective GDP).

Back to overview: Papua New Guinea

Spread of COVID-19 in Papua New Guinea

Since the beginning of the pandemic until May 31st, 2023, a total of 46,864 infected people and 670 deaths have been reported in Papua New Guinea.

The total of 46,864 infected people currently represents 0.52 percent of the total population.

Current vaccination status

According to official WHO data, a total of 526,816 vaccine doses have been administered as of May 21st, 2023. More recent data are not yet available to WHO. There are 384,951 people who have received at least one vaccination (4.3 percent). The booster vaccination was received by 34,918 people (0.4 percent).

323,991 of these are considered fully vaccinated in Papua New Guinea (= 3.6 percent).
This means that Papua New Guinea is one of the countries with the worst vaccination coverage in the world.The vaccination rate is higher in 224 countries.

Weight and size

Body height163 cm157 cm
Weight66.9 kg63.2 kg


Papua New GuineaØ worldwide
Diabetes *17.90%8.81%
HIV / Aids0.06%0.03%

* The number of people suffering from diabetes refers only to inhabitants aged between 20 and 79 years.

Child vaccinations

Papua New GuineaØ worldwide
Hepatitis B0.03%0.08%
DTP *3.10%8.14%

* DTP is a combined basic vaccination against diphtheria, pertussis (whooping cough) and tetanus, which should be given to children up to the age of 23 months.

In Papua New Guinea, 39.3 percent of all over 15-year-olds are still smokers.

Medical supplies

Public health and Covid-19 in Papua New GuineaThe medical care provided by doctors and hospitals in Papua New Guinea is above average, but is not as good as the average within the EU. The country provides 4.0 hospital beds per 1,000 inhabitants. The global mean here is 2.9 beds. Within the EU, 4.6 beds are available for every 1,000 residents.

With about 526 physicians in Papua New Guinea, there are about 0.05 doctors per 1000 inhabitants. Here again the comparison: worldwide this standard is 1.50 physicians per 1,000 inhabitants and in the EU is 3.57.

Through medical care, the mortality rate of major known diseases can be reduced as far as possible. For example, only about 36 percent of all people who suffer from cancer, diabetes, cardiovascular diseases or chylomicron retention disease (CRD) currently die.


The above data correspond to the information from the World Health Organization, Global Health Workforce Statistics, UNICEF, State of the World's Children, Childinfo, Global Health Observatory Data Repository and OECD. The case numbers for the spread of the COVID-19 come from the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC).

Comparison: average ageAverage age by countryRising average age worldwide: since 1950 alone, more than 4 years. A list by country.
Comparison: Life expectancyAverage life expectancy by countryInternational ranking of life expectancy in 119 countries including summary by continents. Explanation of significant factors.
Comparison: quality of lifeQuality of life 2023 in country comparisonCompare the quality of life around the globe: In which countries is life pleasant, safe and healthy?