Roman Queadvlieg, who was sacked earlier this year, has written about the conditions facing nearly 1,000 asylum seekers and refugees held on the Pacific island on behalf of the Australian Government.
Mr Queadvlieg described one refugee village as “reminiscent of the world’s slums” and said the island’s hospital was in “ruin”.
“The roof had partially collapsed and sheets of what looked like asbestos were conspicuous in their angularity,” he wrote of the hospital.
“It looked ramshackle and rickety, with neglected grounds.”
Mr Queadvlieg said he visited the medical facility soon after a refugee “tried to immolate herself”.
In a 3,800-word reflection on Nauru, he described the woman’s “primal screams emanating from the surgical ward”.
“I calculated that it had been at least 15 minutes from the time I had seen her carted away in the ambulance and I wondered why morphine or similar had not yet been administered to relieve her pain,” he wrote.
The former senior public servant said the burns were “primarily on her legs and not life-threatening”.
Mr Quaedvlieg visited the small nation in 2015, before upgrades to the hospital were completed.