Kamuli locals reject fees at gov’t hospital

Wednesday January 16 2013

By Moses Mutaka

Residents have shunned the introduction of cost-sharing services in the Grade B wing of Kamuli Hospital, saying it favours the rich.

Mr Peter Johnson Muledu, a patient from Kabaganda in Namasagali, described the policy, introduced last December, as a “death sentence” for the poor who cannot afford the charges.

According to notices at the premises, consulting a doctor costs Shs5,000, extraction of a tooth, Shs2,000, normal delivery Shs2,000 and delivery by caesarean section Shs30,000.

Residents blame the government for allowing the new arrangement that requires them to pay for services, which should have be given free.

Constraints
However, the hospital administrator, Dr David Mwanga, said the move would improve service delivery, motivate staff and attract specialists in sectors such as radiography which has been lacking for more than 15 years.

The hospital, Dr Mwanga says, has been receiving only Shs31 million a month, which is not enough to cater for buy drugs, pay water and electricity bills, accommodation for medical staff, among other costs.

He added that the cash realised from the new arrangement would bridge the funding gap.
The LC5 chairperson, Ms Salaamu Musumba, said she was surprised by the development, saying it added to challenges such as theft of drugs and indiscipline among medical workers.

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