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Refugee Collection Centre Designated to House Health Workers in Amuru

The district deployed 13 health workers at the Uganda-South Sudan border to conduct surveillance and screening of long-distance cargo truck drivers en-route to Juba since the outbreak of coronavirus disease.
04 Jul 2020 10:36
Elegu refugee collection point in Amuru District - Photo by Dominic Ochola

Audio 2

Amuru District leaders have designated the refugee collection centre in Elegu Town Council to temporarily accommodate health workers deployed to combat Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19).

The district deployed 13 health workers at the Uganda-South Sudan border to conduct surveillance and screening of long-distance cargo truck drivers en-route to Juba since the outbreak of coronavirus disease. 

But the district Chairperson Michael Lakony explained that for the past three months, it was difficult for the health workers to cope with the accommodation challenges given the poor infrastructure development in Elegu.

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To solve the problem, the area leaders have identified a four-acre piece of land which was being administered by the government and the United Nations High Commission for Refugees – UNHCR, as a transit camp for South Sudanese asylum seekers. The land had become redundant following the reduction in the number of refugees fleeing from South Sudan into Uganda in the wake of global COVID-19 pandemic.

Dr Patrick Odong Olwedo, the District Health Officer – DHO says that they decided to use the facility to regulate the risk of exposure of health staff with the community, given the nature of their work as front liners.

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According to Grandfield Oryono, the area Chief Administrative Officer, a team of experts from the Ministry of Health has already undertaken an assessment of the facility to be renovated first before it is occupied by the health staff.

Dr Joyce Moriku Kaducu, the State Minister for Primary Healthcare disclosed that the Ministry has already endorsed the construction of a level III Health Centre at Elegu Town Council and will comprise staff quarters to address accommodation challenges.

Elegu residents trek up to Biabia Health Centre III, the nearest hospital, a distance of 11km to seek for healthcare delivery. To solve the problem, the district has offered a three-acre piece of land for the construction of Elegu Health Centre III.