Masaka hospital given tents to accommodate surging Covid-19 cases

Saturday June 6 2020

This photo taken on June 5, 2020 shows workers

This photo taken on June 5, 2020 shows workers erecting a tent at Masaka Regional Referral Hospital to accommodate new cases of Covid-19. Photo by Wilson Kutamba  


Masaka regional referral hospital has received four tents from the Ministry of Health to accommodate more Covid -19 patients.
Currently, the facility’s Covid-19 treatment centre can only accommodate 21 patients and new cases are being referred to other regional hospitals like Mbarara Mubende or Entebbe.
Dr Nathan Onyachi, the Masaka regional referral hospital director said the tents are going to boost their capacity to admit more patients especially from within the local community and Mutukula border point.

“Our neighbors at Mbarara regional referral hospital have only six beds for Covid-19 patients which means they are already full. So, we had to improvise on how to increase space to accommodate more patients as more cases emerge from the community,” he said.
Dr Onyachi said the tents can accommodate 40 beds and the Ministry has also asked them to fence off the hospital play ground where another bigger tent of 400 beds will be erected.
Dr Mark Jjuko, the in charge Masaka Covid-19 treatment centre indicated that although most of the suspected cases under institutional quarantine have tested negative for the first time and their second test is due this weekend, they can’t bank on the available space.

“When we recorded the first case, the hospital spent like a week without registering any other case and we relaxed until recently when the facility got overwhelmed to the extent that we had to transfer patients to other facilities,” he said.
Masaka Regional Referral hospital has so far registered 34 confirmed Covid-19 cases, six of which have recovered and been discharged. Of the 34 cases, six are community cases. Five other people who are primary contacts of the confirmed cases are under institutional quarantine at the same facility.