Plans are underway to equip regional referral hospitals in Uganda with the capacity to manufacture oxygen to meet their medical needs.
Apart from Mulago Hospital, the regional referral hospitals, general hospitals, Health Centre IVs and other lower level health facilities face a challenge of having a constant supply of oxygen.
“It is only Mulago Hospital that has an oxygen manufacturing plant and tubing systems that can serve every bed. This is lacking in other regional referral hospitals,” Dr. Bitekyerezo, Chair of the Parliamentary Committee on Health told officials of ReaniMed Healthcare Systems, in Istanbul, Turkey, on Thursday, 8th October 2015.
He explained that the Committee of Health is concerned about the cost and availability of medical oxygen in the country; and the purpose of the benchmarking trip to Turkey was to survey options of securing reliable and affordable sources of supply of oxygen for medical use in Uganda.
The Minister of State for Health, Dr. Chris Baryomunsi, who is also with the delegation to Turkey, said that the Ministry, working with Parliament and other stakeholders, is trying to see how they can build the capacity of Uganda’s healthcare system so that it can function better.
“Medical gas systems, particularly oxygen, are extremely important in the efficient delivery of health services,” he noted, adding that “one of the weaknesses in Uganda’s systems is that health facilities are unable to provide oxygen and yet it is a resource that is needed in emergency cases. ”
He revealed that the Ministry has plans to invite the experts to install such technologies and improve the country’s health systems. He noted that lack of oxygen partly contributes to some deaths, which could have been otherwise prevented.
Dr. Bitekyerezo explained that the idea is to replicate the oxygen manufacturing systems they have seen in Turkey with the hope of meeting the demand for oxygen by patients in government and private hospitals. He observed that Turkey has the technology to manufacture and install oxygen-processing plants in every hospital at relatively cheaper costs.
The delegation, which is understudying the oxygen plants in Turkey, includes Hon. Dr. Chris Baryomunsi, the Minister of State for Health; Hon. Dr. Bitekyerezo Medard, Chair, Health Committee; Hon. Dr. Mutono Patrick and Hon. Aol
Source: Parliament News