Constrained Jinja Hospital Readies for Ebola Outbreak

The director of Jinja regional referral hospital, Alfred Yayi, says the hospital has organised standby teams, equipped with the necessary skills to handle Ebola cases throughout Busoga sub region, but they require logistical support to effectively execute their mandate. 

Addressing journalists two days after Jinja district registered an Ebola death of a 45-year-old-male resident of Kayalwe B village, in Buyengo town council, Yayi said the hospital has set up a temporary five-bed capacity Ebola isolation unit, where suspected patients and their close contacts are quarantined, before extraction of samples from them.

He says that all the 10 suspects who were tested at the unit in the past one month turned out negative and were safely reunited with their communities. 

Yayi notes that their order for restocking of the hospital stores with essential supplies, like the personal protective equipment-PPEs from national medical stores are yet to be delivered, which affects the effective response of surveillance teams.

Yayi further says that they have one ambulance for executing referrals of inpatients to the national specialized hospitals, therefore without other ambulances to boost Ebola management, effective tracing of contacts in the mapped out communities is frustrated.

He says much as health workers were oriented in the different ways of Ebola prevention, more trainings are required, so as to equip surveillance teams with the necessary skills entailing the safe ways of extracting samples from suspected Ebola patients and contacts alike.

Yayi also notes that several communities prefer relying on witchdoctors for all their health related challenges, so his team are liaising with ministry of health experts, both Jinja district and Jinja city authorities, alongside some development partners, to sensitize communities on the Ebola dangers and management.

Meanwhile, the deputy Jinja resident district commissioner, Mohammed Kigongo says that they already held a meeting with the health ministry  risk communication experts, who will help with sensitizing communities on the different Ebola preventive measures.

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