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Wednesday,October 28,2020 19:41 PM

Mulago to start open-heart surgery

By Vision Reporter

Added 7th May 2007 03:00 AM

MULAGO Hospital will start carrying out open-heart surgery in the next financial year, the primary health care state minister, Dr. Emmanuel Otaala, revealed yesterday.

MULAGO Hospital will start carrying out open-heart surgery in the next financial year, the primary health care state minister, Dr. Emmanuel Otaala, revealed yesterday.

By Chris Kiwawulo

MULAGO Hospital will start carrying out open-heart surgery in the next financial year, the primary health care state minister, Dr. Emmanuel Otaala, revealed yesterday.

He said Uganda had a complete cardiac team of seven experts and 15 caretaker nurses, but lacked the required equipment.

Otaala noted that about sh6.5b was needed to fully equip the Uganda Heart Institute.

“The Saudi Arabian crown prince has given us sh2b and we have submitted a proposal requesting for sh3b in the next financial year’s budget,” he said.

Meanwhile, Otaala announced that Salam Emergency, an Italian NGO, has offered to carry out free open-heart surgery on Ugandan patients.

The NGO, which built a cardiac hospital in Khartoum, Sudan, will also meet the flight expenses.

The minister noted that at least five Ugandans will be given free treatment at the hospital after every 45 days.

“This is a regional hospital. It has already seen six Sudanese patients operated and they are all doing well. When I was there last week, six patients were brought in from Eritrea and three from the Central African Republic,” he told The New Vision.

Otaala said he met the Khartoum government and the NGO officials about the offer. “We shall soon sign a memorandum of understanding with the Khartoum government and the NGO.”

The minister revealed that the NGO offered to put up and equip satellite screening centres at Gulu’s Lacor Hospital and Mbarara University of Science and Technology.

“Currently, we are screening patients at the Mulago Heart Institute. Five patients have been screened.”

The minister pointed out that Salam Emergency Hospital had only three open-heart surgeons.

He therefore requested that Ugandan medics be allowed to join the team to enable them gain experience. He said three Ugandan doctors were undergoing training in open-heart surgery in India and that six more would travel for the same training soon.

International Hospital Kampala carried out two successful open-heart operations last month and plans to continue their programme, catering for 20 patients per year for a ‘hole in the heart.’

Their machine was donated by Dr. Clement Agyin of St. Anthony’s Hospital in the UK.

“If we had sh6.5b, we could equip the whole hospital,” said Dr. Ian Clarke.

Mulago to start open-heart surgery

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