Health workers in Eastern Uganda have asked Parliament’s Committee on Health to push for improvement in their working conditions citing dilapidated hospital structures and poor accommodation as serious concerns.
Buyende District Health Officer (DHO), Dr Frederick Daniel Isabirye said his district, just like others in Eastern Uganda, are putting up with difficulties of limited space and structures they fear could collapse soon and sought Parliament’s intervention for solutions.
“There is a serious need to improve working conditions of health workers in most of the health facilities in Eastern Uganda; the limited working space coupled with very old dilapidated structures are major challenges in service delivery,” he said.
MPs on the Health Committee led by Vice Chairperson, Hon. Joseph Ruyonga are assessing conditions of health centres in Eastern Uganda to inform plans for refurbishment.
In Jinja, Dr Stephen Banonya said given the city’s proximity to a busy, accident-prone highway, a blood bank is urgently needed for medical emergencies.
“We have many accidents on Kampala-Jinja road [and there is] the increase in malaria cases coupled with many expectant mothers; [this] requires a blood bank to help in saving lives,” he said.
On the accommodation crisis, Dr Banonya said staff, married with children, are forced to share dwellings with colleagues, a situation he said requires the MPs’ urgent intervention.
MPs visited Bugembe Health Centre IV, Wakitaka Health Center III, Kaliro Town Health Centre III among others, spread across the districts of Kaliro, Jinja and Buyende.
Others included Irundu Health Centre III in Kagulu Sub County and Buyende Health Centre III.
In Kaliro, MPs were shocked to discover that Kaliro Town Health Centre III has for the last 18 years been housed in rented premises, promising to push for the construction of the hospital’s permanent premises.
Hon. Mary Annet Nakato (NRM, Buyende) said Parliament should support Buyende’s efforts to acquire a district hospital.