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Suicide incidents hard to stop - Mulago

By Vision Reporter

Added 17th June 2013 02:16 PM

Despite getting rocked by a spate of gruesome suicide incidents, Mulago Hospital administration has dismissed talk of laxity on its part saying such cases are hard to detect and prevent.

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Despite getting rocked by a spate of gruesome suicide incidents, Mulago Hospital administration has dismissed talk of laxity on its part saying such cases are hard to detect and prevent.

By Moses Walubiri

Despite getting rocked by a spate of gruesome suicide incidents, Mulago Hospital administration has dismissed talk of laxity on its part saying such cases are hard to detect and prevent.

In a span of five days last week, two men -Suleiman Kasajja and Moses Mukwaya of Lungujja - jumped to their deaths from the top floors of the national referral hospital to the consternation of bewildered patients and their caretakers.

This comes on the heels of two suicide incidents late last year when two women - Rose Katushabe and Joyce Nambalirwa - breached the metal rails on the hospital's sixth floor and plunged to their deaths.

However, Mulago's Public Relations Officer Enock Kusasira said it would be asking too much from the hospital administration to stop people committing suicide from the hospital's precincts.

When asked whether the hospital administration intends to increase security presence to stem the increasing suicide incidents, Kusasira said its "practically impossible" to "detect and stop" people who want to commit suicide at Mulago unless the hospital hired guards on  a 24-hour basis to man all the metal rails on all its top floors.

"It's practically impossible because we feel we have enough security in this place. If someone wants to commit suicide, there is no way you can detect and stop such a person," Kusasira said describing the problem as one that requires "a multi-dimensional approach."

"We have police men manning our gates and guards at the entrance to every ward. We feel that is enough but people who want to commit suicide will always find away," Kusasira said.

Kusasira also revealed that some of the reported cases of suicide at Mulago have been of people who failed to get professional counseling services after getting afflicted with terminal illnesses like cancer, and for the case of AIDS delay to get hooked on antiretroviral drugs.  

"The problems that compel these people to commit suicide are not Mulago generated. There are many psychological problems among people that the wider society need to address to solve this problem," he added.

Mulago hospital Executive Director, Dr. Byarugaba Baterana declined to comment on the issue referring this reporter to Kusasira.

Of the last six registered suicide incidents at Mulago, only two have not been of patients jumping to their deaths - that of the hospital's mortuary attendant, Peter Agio, and Kasajja.

 

Suicide incidents hard to stop - Mulago

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