Dr. Stephen Obbo, the Director Lira Regional Referral Hospital advised the community to embrace the mass vaccination exercise taking place now saying the majority of people being admitted in the treatment unit are those who are not vaccinated.
On Tuesday at Lira Cathedral Square, by 10 am, the health workers were ready to vaccinate, but there were no people. At Adyel Division and Lira Bus Park, the exercise started by midday and at the end of the day, only 67 people were vaccinated.
The heightened enforcement stemmed from last week’s task force resolution which resolved that people not adhering to the COVID-19 Standard Operating Procedures-SOPs will be arrested and charged under the Public Health Act.
At Lira main market, hand washing points have been installed at all main entrances but lack water, the traders and other people accessing the market do not wear masks. The situation is similar in other places like shops and supermarkets and the parks.
Although the hospital has an oxygen plant, its production does not match the demand especially during the surge of COVID_19. The current plant which has the capacity to produce 30 oxygen cylinders is now producing at least 25 yet the unit uses approximately 60 cylinders per day.
However, at Lira Regional Referral Hospital, Dr. Stephen Obbo, the hospital’s director says over 90% of the staff there has been vaccinated. Adding that efforts are underway to ensure that the remaining percentage also receive the jab.
While addressing the COVID-19 task force meeting on Thursday, Kareiga informed the team that the circulation of fake vaccination cards has been recorded at Lira Regional Referral Hospital. He however did not disclose the number of people involved in the unscrupulous deal for fear of jeopardizing investigations.
The neglected tropical disease is spread by infected mosquitoes whose bites deposit a parasite that travels to the lymph nodes. It affects the lymphatic system causing swelling and pain in the legs, arms and genitalia. It also increases the risk of frequent bacterial infections that harden and thicken the skin.
The city with a population of over 10,000 people, has only six vaccination points; Ayago Primary School and PAG General Hospital located in City East Division and Lira University Teaching Hospital, Lira Primary School, Ober Health Centre IV and Lira Regional Referral Hospital in City West Division.
Jasper Abura, the Principle Education Officer of Lira City explains that the department has met its set target and still hopes to have more teachers vaccinated. He notes that non-vaccinated teachers will not access learning institutions.
Flavia Terimulungi, the UPDF 5th Infantry Division spokesperson confirmed the death of the applicant, saying that the deceased might have been on medication for an illness, which they are yet to establish.
Emily Awio, in charge ART clinic at Ogur HCIV, says that the bulk ARVs are given to people to last them six months. She explains that the drugs are given to people who have a stable viral load and those who have been on treatment for more than two years.
The facilities are all well equipped, highly specialized and offering some of the services that cannot even be found in government hospitals. For instance, Lacor hospital in Gulu has two anesthesiologists in the whole region, while Pope John’s Hospital of Atapara (Aber) has a CT Scan for detecting bones and joint problems.
Judith Namirimu Polah, a Senior Principal Nursing Officer supervising the treatment centre explained that the facility is filled up due to the surge in the number of cases. She explains that the extra treatment centre will be located in two tents within a designated area at the hospital.
The funding is needed to implement COVID-19 control measures for six months beginning July to December 2021. It will cover costs for coordination and leadership, case management, Infection Control and Prevention, Surveillance and contact tracing, mental health, and psychosocial support as well as Risk Communication and Social Mobilization.