The partnership aims to meet the health needs of the people in these remote areas in two ways. Doctors aboard Paul Gauguin will offer volunteer consultations during scheduled port calls, and transportation will be provided, free, to health professionals commissioned by the government’s Health Directorate to ensure advance specialized consultations.

This collaboration – a first for the cruise industry in French Polynesia – deepens the line’s commitment to the region, its home for 25 years. 

The ‘Taote Gauguin’ (taote means doctor in Tahitian) medical partnership agreement was signed by Cédric Mercadal, French Polynesia’s minister of health in charge of prevention and generalized social protection, and Florence Courbière, on behalf of Paul Gauguin Cruises and Ponant, the line’s parent company.

Honored to support local communities

‘We are honored to partner with French Polynesia’s medical community to provide essential services in the wonderful communities we admire and respect so deeply,’ said Navin Sawhney, CEO Americas for Paul Gauguin Cruises and Ponant USA. ‘The Taote Gauguin initiative allows us to further support the people who have so warmly welcomed Paul Gauguin Cruises into their lives for 25 years, proudly sharing their cultures, traditions and natural wonders with our guests.’

‘We welcome this public-private partnership established with a major undertaking in the country’s economic development, which is fully in line with the government’s desire to strengthen the offer of local care for the benefit of Polynesian families, particularly in remote archipelagos,’ Mercadal said. 

A testing phase, which included three shifts of medical consultations, took place during The Gauguin’s July 29 to Aug. 12 voyage to better understand the program’s logistics, assess medical and operational needs and constraints and refine the agreement’s terms.

Delighted to provide such important services

‘It was a very successful effort marked by over 20 consultations with patients aged from 6 months to 77 years, three of whom were sent on board for X-rays,’ said Capt. Michel Quioc. ‘Fatu Hiva has no medical imaging facilities so two ultrasounds were also carried out. The team was delighted to be able to provide such important medical services.’

The program will feature 40 consultation shifts a year to residents of the Marquesas, one of French Polynesia’s more remote regions. The transport of medical specialists from Tahiti to these islands will double the medical presence with patients also receiving certain medical treatments on board such as X-rays and ultrasounds. 


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