Hospice Africa Uganda, a charity that cares for thousands of sick and dying in Uganda has appealed to the Government to prioritise health in the 2016/2017 Budget to be revealed on Wednesday.
With centres in Kampala, Mbarara and Hoima, Hospice Africa Uganda said urgent investment is needed in the health services to ease the pain and suffering of many.
The newly appointed Chief Executive Director of HAU, Dr. Eddie Mwebesa, said the health services in Uganda are currently not able to cope with the huge need expressed by 250,000 patients needing Palliative Care yet this need is growing.
In particular he said he would like to see the Government support the expansion of training and education in palliative care.
“We welcomed the commitment from the Minister for Health, who recently attended the graduation of candidates of the Diploma in Clinical Palliative Care awarded by HAU, to support the increase in palliative care training. We hope the Government follows up on this promise,” he said.
“We also want, in line with Uganda signing the World Health Assembly Resolution in 2014, to see palliative care integrated in Uganda’s health systems at all levels, and to be part of all doctor and nurse training”.
HAU was established in 1993 and today looks after 1,600 patients a month in Uganda. It also manufactures affordable oral liquid morphine through a public-private partnership with National Medical Stores and the Ministry of Health funded by the Ugandan Government.
Dr. Mwebesa welcomed the fact that work on the bunker needed for the new radiotherapy machine has started at Mulago hospital.
“As thousands of patients have been left without radiotherapy due to the breakdown of Uganda’s only machine it is imperative that a new machine is instituted for the resumption of full services to patients.”