By Violet Nabatanzi
GOVERNMENT has given owners of medical laboratories an ultimatum of four months to register their facilities or face closure.
The government has launched a programme of registering all medical laboratories across the Country by March 31 next year.
Speaking during the launch of medical laboratory registration exercise in Kampala on Friday the state minister for primary health care Sarah Opendi said at the moment the number of medical laboratories is not known in the country.
The Allied Health Professions Council (AHPC) which will be registering the laboratories said that some laboratories were giving fake results to patients because they don’t have necessary equipment.
‘We have had problems of fake blood results because most of the units have no microscopes,” the registrar of AHPC Patrick Kibirango said.
Opendi asked the council to make an inventory of all medical laboratory facilities and services offered for the purpose of planning and making service providers accountable.
“The registration will help us ensure that all operating laboratories in the Country are registered and closely monitored,” Opendi said.
She appealed to health professionals to ensure registration and renewal of annual practicing licenses as a legal requirement for one to practice in a given country.
Opendi also requested the council to Intensify monitoring and supervision in rural areas because most of the quarks move to villages after they have been de-registered.
Kibirango said the standards for laboratories have been developed and all proprietors are supposed to ensure that their businesses are registered before the ultimatum expires.
“We have put in place a system where we are going to know each laboratory and the qualifications of laboratory technicians to ensure that the public is protected,”
He said “the owners of the laboratories are supposed to apply for inspection of their laboratories after; we shall determine whether the laboratory meets the minimum requirements before issuing the licenses,”
Some of the minimum requirements for a laboratory to operate include functional microscopes in addition a person who is examining the specimen must be qualified and fully registered among others.