Patients Starving at Gulu Hospital

Minister of Health, Dr. Christine Ondoa

Patients at Gulu Referral Hospital are starving following the suspension of the feeding program because of lack funds. The worst affected are the patients who are without caretakers and those who have spent months nursing injuries in the casualty unit. The patients are now at the mercy of good Samaritans who provide them with cooked food that is only served once in a week.

Josephine Akello is one of the patients who are facing starvation at the hospital. Akello has spent three months in the casualty ward. She explains that she has been surviving on food provided by well wishers because the hospital does not provide them food. Akello says that a group of Christians serve them cooked food once every week and on the other days she has to survive on the good will of fellow patients who share with her the little they have.

Dr. Nathan Onyachi, the Director Gulu Referral Hospital says they are not in position to feed patients because of a shortfall in funding. Onyachi explains that the currently the hospital only provides food to patients in the mental and TB wards. He says the hospital also offers food to the neediest patients who are identified by social workers. He says it’s practically impossible to provide food to the 367 patients who are admitted in the hospital using the limited funds that they receive from the treasury.

Onyachi however did not reveal how much money the hospital receives from the treasury for feeding the patients. He says the shortfall in funding has forced the hospital to suspend several activities and divert the funds to priority areas.

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