By Solomon Hamala
Government is set to upgrade 84 Health Centers 1V to hospital status starting next year in a bid to extend services closer to the people.
The State Minister for Health General Duties, Robina Nabanja revealed this yesterday 16th July 2020 while touring Luuka health center 4.
She said upgrading of the health centers will be done in a phased manner.
Nabanja who is also the Woman Member of Parliament Kakumiro district assured the people of Luuka that the facility will be upgraded to a hospital since the population in the area had risen during the past few years.
“There is need to uplift this facility since demand for health services has shot up as a result of the huge population,” she said.
She however appealed to locals to support the ruling NRM government and President Museveni in the forthcoming elections to ensure it full fills its promises.
Nabanja expressed concern over the poor state of Luuuka health center 4 saying it put the lives of patients seeking medical services at risk of contracting other serious infections.
“Patients especially in the maternity ward are congested yet there should be some spacing especially during this time of COVID 19,” she said.
She promised to lobby soon for an antenatal shade; bulbs for the outpatient’s wards for the health center from the ministry so that things move on smoothly.
Nabanja urged members of the public to always wear face masks, besides maintaining social distancing as one way of containing the spread of the COVID 19 virus.
She said currently the number of COVID 19 patients by press time had reached 1050 with 977 discharged after fully recovering from the disease.
The LC 5 chairman Luuka, Baker Luwangula urged President Yoweri Museveni to fulfill his campaign pledge of donating an ambulance to the people of Luuka district.
Luwangula said the district that was carved out of Iganga in 2005 has since operated without an ambulance to transport critically ill patients or emergency cases that need urgent attention at referral hospitals.
He appealed to government to also consider increasing funding towards the health facility to clear utility bills besides meeting other costs.
The Resident District Commissioner Luuka, Pamela Watuwa urged locals to embrace government programs like Operation Wealth Creation to ensure they uplift their house hold incomes.
Watuwa hailed the people of Luuka for being cooperative by adhering to the regulations by the Ministry of Health and the President in the fight against the COVID 19 disease.
Meanwhile, members of the public urged government to regularly monitor health workers at the Luuka health center 4 to reduce on the frequent absenteeism.
John Tenywa, a boda boda cyclist at the Luuka town council stage said it would be a waste of time to elevate the facility to a hospital status in case frequent absenteeism of workers is not checked.
Tenywa said on most occasions health workers at the facility absent themselves from work while the ones on duty are reluctant to attend to emergency cases unless one is an influential figure.
“The ordinary person will continue suffering even though government upgrades the facility to a hospital,” he said.