Sarah Opendi handing over a motorcycle to Godfrey Kisembo, a medical superintendent at Kiryandongo district as Dianah Atwine, the permanent secretary in the health ministry and other members of staff look on. Photo by Ramadhan Abbey
The health ministry has handed over 83 new motorcycles to selected districts to facilitate the transportation of laboratory samples from hard-to-reach areas.
The state minister for general duties, Sarah Opendi, handed over the motorcycles at a ceremony held at the ministry’s head offices on Thursday.
The motorcycles, procured by the Government with support from Global Fund are intended for use in transporting laboratory samples from lower health facilities to more specialised regional hubs.
The programme is intended to boost the capacity of districts to detect and analyse health cases, especially in geographically challenged regions.
While receiving a motorcycle on behalf of Kiryandongo said the district, Dr Kisembo Godfrey, a medical superintendent said the district had only one motorcycle which was not enough to move samples.
“Patients experience some delays in receiving their results. With the help of these new motorcycles, people will be able to access their results in time,” Kisembo said.
Opendi warned laboratory technicians against neglecting their duties saying the practice has tarnished the image of public hospitals ant the entire medical profession.
The minister, who recently disguised as a patient caught two medics extortionists asking for a bribe, warned medics against extortion.
She narrated that during her recent visit to Naguru General Hospital in Kampala, she found out that patients were being asked to pay sh150,000 as laboratory fees.
The release of the bicycles coincided with the launch of the first National Laboratory Biorisk Management Audit Report 2017, which shows that laboratories are ill to handle health risks.