In the Consolidated Auditor General Report of December 2021, which was released this week. It states how terrible the things are in the hospitals across the Republic. This is not in one of them, but it comes back and the report is really showing how the state hasn’t invested or prepared the Ministry of Health, neither the budgets to ensure the hospitals has the beds, equipment and personnel to cope with the needs. That is very clear and I will show it here…
Butabika National Mental Referral Hospital:
“According to the patient admission schedule and the strategic plan, the Hospital currently handles between 750 and 780 in-patients per month compared to its bed capacity of 550 patients. This implies that 200 to 230 admitted patients either share beds or sleep on the floor” (Auditor General, December 2021).
Kawempe National Referral Hospital:
“It was noted that the Hospital stored expired medicines without disposing them as required by the law. Out of the seventy four (74) items of expired drugs, I observed that thirty six (36) had expired by end of December 2020 (representing 49%). Under the circumstances, lives of patients are threatened by the existence of expired medicines at the hospital premises. I noted that the Referral Hospital was heavily congested with patients crowded in the wards and some sleeping on the floors. This was further evidenced by the data collected on Bed Occupancy Rates which showed an average BOR of 113% for the year under review. Congestion was also observed in the stores where some items were placed directly on the floor exposing them to damage” (Auditor General, December 2021).
Kiruddu National Referral Hospital:
“A review of drugs supply chain management revealed that on several occasions there were drug stock-outs which left Kiruddu Hospital without several essential, vital and necessary drugs. Inspection of the hospital drug stores revealed that some drugs/chemicals had expired in the Hospital stores. This could have been due to low utilization rates, receipt of drugs with short shelf life or placement of orders that do not match the usage patterns” (Auditor General, December 2021).
Mulago National Referral Hospital:
“The Hospital spent UGX. 474,479,100 on refurbishment of the MRI machine. It was noted that the MRI machine was delivered and installed in 2018 and has since never been put to use” (…) “I noted that vital medical equipment was in poor working condition, while others were fully not functional and required replacement. The equipment included: autoclaves in the central sterile service department; patient monitors in the accident and emergency surgical unit; blood coagulation machine in the clinical laboratory unit; ICU beds in the intensive care unit, and CT machine in the Radiology department” (Auditor General, December 2021).
After reading such things, you wonder how the state of the hospitals is across the republic. As these are just four of them. This is not all of them, but only four. Where there is overcrowding of patients and either lacking medicines or having out of date ones. This is really telling how the Ministry is mismanaged and underfunded, as the staff and hospitals are not well served. Neither can the other agencies supporting the hospitals be well-run either. As the state haven’t cared for them as well.
This here is a tragic record and after the global pandemic. The state should have the basics in order, but clearly that’s too much to ask. Peace.