Kampala, Uganda —- Patients in Kamuli District are avoiding seeking treatment at the district’s general hospital following the designation of the outpatient ward as a Covid19 isolation centre.
Dr Fred Duku, the acting District Health Officer told the Parliamentary Technical Committee on Covid that ever since the services of the outpatient unit were suspended to create an isolation centre, the number of patients has dropped.
“There is a lot of fear related to the Covid-19 pandemic that people have resorted to not coming to hospitals which is reducing service delivery in regards to health,” Duku said.
He added that this was affecting other health centres at sub county level since most of the health officials at these centres were not adequately trained to handle Covid.
Kamuli Municipality MP, Hon Rehema Watongola said that the pregnant women have also stopped attending antenatal clinics for fear of contracting the coronavirus at the hospital.
She attributed this to the stigma associated with the contraction of the virus.
In Kamuli Municipality, we have families that have lost children to malaria because they feared to take them to hospital. The lockdown also affected them as they could not get transport to take them to the hospital,” Watongola said.
Workers MP, Dr Sam Lyomoki appreciated the work done by the district task force and asked them to continue with the sensitization of masses.
Lyomoki also asked government to look into the issue of managing asymptomatic cases from their homes in order to create space in the hospital.
“Many of the people being treated in these centres are not badly off yet resources are being used to treat them. As a committee, we are discussing this issue and we shall forward it to the national task force,” he said.
The district task force has reserved a newly constructed Busota Health Centre III as the isolation and treatment centre with a bed capacity of 21 in order to shift the current isolation centre away from the hospital.