Naguru Hospital Lacks Essential Medicines

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In short
Hajara Nalumansi recently traveled from Kawempe to Naguru hospital, where she was diagnosed with severe malaria. According to Nalumansi, she was advised to seek medical attention elsewhere since the hospital had neither Artesunate nor quinine.

Naguru hospital has been grappling with the lack of essential medical supplies and medicines for the past four months. Information at Naguru hospital shows that National Medical Stores-NMS is supposed to make supplies to the hospital every two months.

Stella Nanyonga, a Senior Pharmacist at Naguru hospital told URN in an interview that the hospital lacks essentials supplies like gloves, anti-malaria drugs such as Artesunate and quinine. It also lacks propofol, sutures, disinfectants and stationery for keeping the records of patients among others.

 
According to Nanyonga, as a result, they ask patients to go to other health facilities or buy the required drugs and supplies from private pharmacies before they can be attended to.


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Nanyonga says they are discouraged by the way National Medical Stores charges for the medicines, which affects their planning. She says that although NMS is involved in the procurement plan and advises them on how much each drug would cost, management is surprised when NMS changes the prices without alerting them, which affects their planning.
 

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She cites an example where they planned to procure alcohol hand scrub 60ml at an estimated cost of Shillings 1,550 but NMS doubled the cost to Shillings. Nanyonga also says they planned to buy the plaster adhesive zinc oxide 75MM X 5MM at Shillings 3,250 each, but NMS sold to them at Shillings 4,667. 


Nanyonga also notes that the supplied plasters supplied to the hospital is of poor quality and it does not stick to the skin. She however, notes that even when they reduce the amount on the advice of NMS, they still don't get the exact number of items required.



 
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But Dan Kimosho, the National Medical Stores Spokesperson, says they make late deliveries to Naguru Hospital because of the orders come late. He also notes that the hospital lacks some of the drugs like the malaria Artesunate because it doesn't order for it.  Kimosho also defends the price fluctuations, saying they have to increase the cost of transportation.


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Hajara Nalumansi recently traveled from Kawempe to Naguru hospital, where she was diagnosed with severe malaria. According to Nalumansi, she was advised to seek medical attention elsewhere since the hospital had neither Artesunate nor quinine.
 
"I first went to Mulago in the morning following persistent malaria. I was told that the hospital services had shifted to another hospital in Munyonyo. Considering the distance between Munyonyo and Naguru, I opted to come here to save transport. But they have also told me that they don't have the medicines. I don't know what to do." she said.


Nalumansi is one of hundreds of patients who have been bounced from Naguru hospital due to lack of drugs.

 

About the author

Beatrice Nyangoma
Beatrice Nyangoma values her independence as a journalist. This was one of her major considerations before she became a URN staffer in 2015.

Nyangoma says, "I like URN because it gives me room to decide what stories I want to work on. That is so important to me."

The URN Jinja bureau chief since July 2016, Nyangoma considers health matters a beat close to her heart. One of the highlights of her career so far were her exclusive interviews unveiling the rot in Mulago hospital in early 2016.

Nyangoma started out writing for the Red Pepper newspaper in 2011 in her final year of university. She was majorly a health reporter. In 2012, Nyangoma moved to Top Television as a health, business reporter and weekend news editor. She was also the assistant editorial manager of Kabarole Research and Resource Centre FM (KRC FM).