Geoffrey Topiny, the Head of Risk Communication and Community Engagement of Gulu City COVID -19 Taskforce revealed that he receives between three to four complaints of stigmatization from COVID -19 patients undergoing home-based care treatment daily.
Residents of Gulu City are on spot for stigmatizing COVID -19
patients undergoing home-based care treatment.
The latest report from Gulu District Health Office indicates that
a total of 419 COVID -19 patients are undergoing home-based care, while 37 and
14 are in severer condition at St. Mary’s Hospital Lacor and Gulu Regional Referral
Santos Comboni Okwera, a resident of Kanyagoga ‘A’ Sub –Ward in Bardege –Layibi
Division says seven of his family members tested positive of COVID -19 and are
undergoing home-based care.
Okwera says that when the neighbours learnt of the health status
of the family members, no one wants to visit his home and that whenever they
want to buy items from nearby shops and markets, the sellers turn them down,
making life very hard for them.
According to Okwera, the area local leaders who should have been the one to
sensitize the locals against stigmatizing the COVID –19 patients, they are the
one spearheading the vice.
Geoffrey Topiny, the Head of Risk Communication and Community
Engagement of Gulu City COVID -19 Taskforce revealed that he receives between
three to four complaints of stigmatization from COVID -19 patients undergoing
home-based care treatment daily.
According to Topiny, some of the landlords ordered for the
eviction of those patients while other patients are denied access to buying
food items since the locals look at their money as a source of infection.
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Topiny says due to stigmatization, a lot of the patients have
begun flouting the home-based care guidelines while others have declined to
seek medical attention. He appealed to the local community to cease such an act
since it is hampering the fights against COVID -19.
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Alfred Okwonga, the Gulu City Mayor who also Co-chairs the Gulu
City COVID -19 Taskforce says they also learnt that most homes do not have
enough rooms for the patients’ isolation while on treatment. He says they are
thinking of opening an isolation centre for treating all those who will be
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Michael Mukiibi, the World Health Organization –WHO Coordinator
for Northern Region says Care International has given 18 million shillings to
Gulu City COVID -19 Taskforce to help offer psychological and basic case
management support to the patients under home-based care treatment and their