Coronavirus: Patients flee from Hoima Hospital

Sunday March 29 2020

Facility. Medical staff at Hoima Referral

Facility. Medical staff at Hoima Referral Hospital wash hands as a preventive measure against Covid-19 at the weekend. PHOTO BY FRANCIS MUGERWA 

By Francis Mugerwa

Hoima- Dozens of In-patients and caretakers have deserted Hoima Regional Referral Hospital after one coronavirus case was registered at the health facility on Friday evening.

 According to witnesses, there was stampede at the hospital as several In-patients at the facility rushed to obtain discharge forms from medical workers.

 “I came here [hospital] to dress a wound. I received treatment. Let me rush home. I have heard that there is a coronavirus case here,” a woman from Katikara Sub-county in Kakumiro District, said.

 There was panic in Hoima town when news of the confirmed Covid-19 case spread in town. Many people retreated to their homes, leaving the streets with minimal traffic.

 The Hoima District Coronavirus Response Taskforce said the confirmed case is a 55-year old man, a resident of Kibugubya village, Kyabigambire Sub-county in Hoima District.

Preliminary information indicate that he was working in Afghanistan but he recently returned to Uganda.

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 He reportedly went to Mulago Hospital for testing but he never waited for results. He travelled to Hoima where he has been undertaking personal businesses.

 “We located him and isolated him at Hoima Regional Referral Hospital. He has been taken to Mulago Hospital for further management,” Mr Samuel Kisembo Araali, the Hoima Resident District Commissioner, who is the head of the Hoima District coronavirus response taskforce, said.

 He said six samples from Hoima Hospital were sent to Entebbe Virus Research Institute but results are not yet out.

 The positive case was isolated at Hoima Hospital’s Mental Unit and the Health Ministry  ambulance later evacuated him on Friday to Mulago Hospital for further management.

 19 contacts being traced

Mr Kisembo said the 19 people who interacted with the man who tested positive have been identified.

 “Out of the 19, we have obtained samples two of them. We are tracing others. The samples will be sent to the Uganda Virus Research Institute for testing,” Mr Kisembo said on Saturday.

 fmugerwa@ug.nationmedia.com

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