Entebbe referral hospital closed to inpatients after Covid-19 surge

Tuesday June 08 2021
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A private security guard manning Entebbe Hospital gate turns away people who had come to the hospital on June 07. PHOTO/PAUL ADUDE

By Paul Adude

The director Entebbe Referral Hospital, Dr Moses Muwanga has said the facility has been closed to inpatients due to a surge in the number of Covid-19 patients being admitted at the hospital.

“To create space, we decided to close the inpatient services in order to handle referrals from all other hospitals. All other outpatient services like OPD, chronic care and screening for Covid-19 patients among others will continue,” he said.

Mr Muwanga made the remarks June 7 while addressing journalists after a meeting with the hospital staff to prepare them for the new hospital operations purposed to cater for intensive Covid-19 patients.

“We will not be able to admit inpatients, the inpatients section has been closed.We have been turning off referrals due to limited space which we had initially reserved and was not enough to cater for all referrals,” he said.

In April 2020, the hospital was closed to the general public during the first wave to cater for Covid 19 patients until March this year when it was reopened to the general public.

“The main challenge we have faced is that our pregnant mothers have started contracting Covid-19. We have to open those services in order to treat women who have contracted Covid,” he said

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Mr Muwanga said community members will be referred to other nearby health centre’s during this period.

“We support other hospitals and receive up to ten cases per day brought in by ambulances. There are people who could have asymptomatic Covid-19. Here, we are going to deal with only patients who require intensive care,” he said.

Mr Muwanga said as of Monday, the hospital had admitted 58 Covid-19 patients with 30 of them in critical condition.

“The hospital can accommodate 130 Covid-19 patients at full capacity with only 50 of them in intensive care due to limited respirators,” he said.

Mr Muwanga said the opening of the isolation unit which has been undergoing renovation works will create additional space for the Covid-19 patients.

The site engineer at the National Isolation Centre, Mr Henry Kiseka told Daily Monitor that renovation works have neared completion.

“We are working at a steady speed to ensure that the isolation unit is ready by the end of this week, we are putting final touches, ensuring running water, electricity, final painting, compound works to ensure we are able to receive patients,” he said.

The closure of the hospital comes a day after President Museveni announced a new 42 day-lockdown to contain a fast-spreading second wave of the Covid-19 virus.

editorial@ug.nationmedia.com

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