ANDREW MWENDA: Is Uganda ready to handle coronavirus patients


Veteran journalist, Andrew Mwenda. (FILE PHOTO)

Many Ugandans are wondering about the clinical capacity Uganda has to handle coronavirus patients especially those that may need intensive or high dependency care.

Here is information on the newly refurbished Mulago Hospital alone which I visited last week with my son Bebe Cool and witnessed the great work government has done there: it has 27 state of the art ICU beds for adults, 15 for kids, 2 for organ transplant – 44 beds. The heart institute has 12 and cancer institutes has 10.

Then the new specialized maternal and neonatal hospital has 25 full equipped ICU beds for adults, 47 for neonatal giving Mulago a total of 138 ICU beds in Mulago alone. Each of these ICU beds has a mechanical ventilator, volumetric pump, a defrebrator, a feeding pump, an infusion pump, a patient warmer and monitor.

In main wards of the refurbished Mulago Hospital, they have 950 beds, each of which can be used as High Dependency Unit (HDU) because each bed has a supply of oxygen, vacuum and medical air. This means each one of them can support a high dependency patient.

So Mulago alone can handle over 1,000 beds that can support Intensive Care and High Dependency Care. This is just one hospital. There are many other public and private hospitals with ICUs AND HDUs but I do not have their numbers. The ministry of health or that of information should be doing this.

I know many of you think the country’s healthcare system has fallen apart. This is because President Yoweri Museveni and his NRM government don’t talk about the things they do!

1 thought on “ANDREW MWENDA: Is Uganda ready to handle coronavirus patients

  1. Andrew is a bright man but also inconsistent and contraversial! So does mulago having 1,000 beds make it a great treatment hub for covid-19 patients? Why are so many people dying in ICUs? Are services in there commensurate with the number of beds? We all know mulago is a national referral hospital and so should manage well varried and complex health conditions. However, the way they are failing with covid patients is worrying!

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