The victims' parents say that the health workers were not readily available at the facility, but they interfaced with Kangawo, who offered to vaccinate them at a cost of 25,000 Shillings per victim, which they agreed to pay.
Speaking at the launch of the Field Epidemiology Training Program-FETP in Jinja city on Tuesday, Natalie, said that the US Center for Disease Control-CDC aims to empower frontline health workers with the required skills needed in response to epidemics and other related illnesses within their areas of operations.
The hospital is reported to have runout of azithromycin, Vitamin C and Zinc in early June this year and have not received supplies from national medical stores-NMS ever since. This has prompted patients to purchase them exorbitantly from private pharmacies.
Florence Tugumisirize, the Executive Director of Jinja Regional Referral Hospital, says they have so far admitted 156 COVID-19 patients in the second wave. She says 124 of these were treated and discharged while 32 succumbed to the virus.
James Ongicha, the engineering technician and regional workshop manager says that, the plant used to refill five cylinders in two hours, however, it currently performs the same task for close to four hours, which creates the need to service it urgently.
A total of 32 COVID-19 patients were admitted to the hospital’s ICU between May 2020 and April 2021. Of these, 26 died while only six were successfully discharged from the facility, while three other lives have been lost since the outbreak of the second wave last month.
Ruth Namukuve, a health worker in Buwenge says that the supplies received from the district health officials are insufficient to effectively attend to the ever-increasing numbers of covid-19 suspects who seek services at the facility daily.
“These two part-time anesthesiologists only show up to check on patients who fail to stabilize in a period of three days and when their situations are so complicated for us to handle, but the rest of the cases are being managed by the nurses throughout their admission at the ICU,” she says.
Aisha Mohammed, an attendant of a patient told URN that her relative was receiving critical healthcare at a private clinic but the health workers directed them to offer him home-based oxygen therapies claiming that their patient had stabilized.
Angom died on Monday morning. However, her body was still lying in the outpatient department by Tuesday afternoon. The deceased’s neighbour, Ruth Akello says Angom was bleeding profusely when she was rushed to the facility on Monday shortly before she was pronounced dead.
The patients were protesting the poor living conditions at the centre, late meals, poor sanitation and delayed results. The patients further challenged the absence of guards at the facility which does not have a perimeter wall to protect them from intruders and the lack of psychosocial support.
Samuel Kyomukama, the head of enforcement at the National Drug Authority- NDA says that, they have recovered unspecified amounts of drugs with prescriptions in Asian languages contrary to the NDA’s standard operating procedures which permit them to sell English labelled drugs.
As a result, community members say, that a number of confined patients are taking advantage of the loophole to freely take walks to unidentified locations, especially in the evening. Many have been seen purchasing different items from shops and mixing up with unsuspecting community members.