Uganda Medical Associations officials rush to Lira as Two Health Workers Test COVID-19 Positive

Experts have dashed to Lira Referral Hospital after 2 of their colleagues tested positive of COVID-19

LIRA – Uganda Medical Association (UMA) top leadership on 30th May 2020 joined the Minister of Health and her team in Lira after two of their colleagues tested positive of COVID-19.

A message, the President of the medical association, Dr. Idro Richard send to his fellow doctors, the RedPepper Digital also has a copy indicates the National Executive Committee visited Regional Referral Hospital to stand with and support health workers in the hospital.

“The reason for the visit was that the lead nurse and a Medical Officer, treating COVID19 patients out of a team of 14 in LRRH contracted the disease and tested positive”

Dr. Idro explains that the nurse had already been transferred to Entebbe hospital and on Saturday evening, the doctor was transferred to Mulago hospital.

He says the two health professionals were in stable conditions.

President of Uganda Medical Association, Dr. Idro Richard speaks to the press in Jamuray

According to Dr. Idro, the Uganda medical Association NEC, later held an online meeting with doctors in Lango branch to identify some of the underlying challenges, discuss and suggest some recommendations.

“It was identified that the treatment unit in Lira filled quickly. Admissions rose from 0 to 21 in just 5 days” Dr. Idro writes in his message.

Other issues identified were that a team of 14 that include three ministry officials, six nurses, and five support staff), recently completed training, and had insufficient senior cover.

Additionally, that the batch of the Personal Protective Equipment, the health workers in Lira used, especially the KN95 in the hospital, was loosely fitting.

“Ministry of Health had already sent some Senior Clinicians, survelleince officers and epidemiologists. This team had identified some of the problems including structural issues” the UMA president notes.

Dr. Idro narrated that they were also joined by the heads of COVID19 case management and infection prevention and control in Ministry Of Health.

“Among other things, it was recommended that the team in Lira Regionally Referral Hospital should be urgently supported” Idro explains some of the solutions reached at during the meeting in Lira.

He adds, it was resolved that Ministry of Health immediately identifies and sends in senior cover and a team to help retrain the staff.

“Additional staff should be brought to support the workers. In the short term, this can either come from Mulago or the army” Dr. Idro observes.

He also suggests conducting a risk communication

The UMA president calls for the Lango branch to support Lira Regional Referral Hospital and design messages for radio discussions. The broadcast should be done jointly with the local leadership” he suggests.

Dr. Idro explains that there is a need to address the issue of stigma among health workers.

“We need to address potential stigma of health workers” UMA president asserts.

The positive test results of health workers in Lira Regional Referral Hospital are the first since COVID-19 cases were confirmed in Uganda.

However, Uganda has ever lost a medical doctor, Dr. Mathew Lokwiya in Gulu, to Ebola after contracting the disease from infected patient.

Uganda has 84 new confirmed cases of COVID19 as of May 30th, 2020.

The total number of confirmed cases is now 413.

32 cases are contacts to previously confirmed cases. All were under quarantine at the time of the test.

52 new cases are truck drivers: 50 arrived from South Sudan via Elegu, while two arrived from Kenya via Busia.

51 positive foreign truck drivers were handed over to their country of origin
Total Recoveries: 72.

The nation is expecting President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni to address country on Monday at 8 p.m.

President Museveni will address the nation at 8:00Pm on Monday over COVID-19 pandemic.

According to ICT Minister Judith Nabakooba, the President will guide the nation on the next steps to be taken before the current extended lockdown ends on June 4.

The President is expected to announce lifting further of the lockdown as the country works to stop the spread of coronavirus.

President Museveni last week announced that Uganda will lift the current lockdown over the Coronavirus pandemic.

Private cars have since returned on the road.

Museveni directed that public transport (buses, mini buses, taxis) would resume after proper preparation on June 4 but each will carry half of their loading capacity.

In the last address, the president opened for the undergraduate finalists, Postgraduate finalists, finalists in the Tertiary institutions, candidates at P.7, S.4 and S6 levels.

He directed Ministry of Education, Ministry of Transport and Ministry of Health to work out modalities to this effect. Communication has been made to that effect.

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