Nurse Abandons Health Centre Over Threats For Cruelty Top story

2352 Views Hoima, Uganda

In short
Byaruhanga's flight comes amid several complaints about her being cruel to patients. Last week Buhimba Sub county Chairman David Atuhura filed a complaint at police against the nurse. Atuhura told Uganda Radio Network he filed the case on behalf of the many patients she has abused and sometimes slapped when they come for treatment. Atuhura says his move to police followed a complaint to the district health office against the nurse bore no fruits, last month. The nurse is also wanted by police now.

A nurse in Hoima has abandoned work amid accusations of being cruel to patients.
 
Janet Byaruhanga, an enrolled nurse at Buhimba Health III abandoned work three weeks ago. The in charge Buhimba Health Center, Bruhan Baitwaki says Byaruhanga left work claiming she feared for her  life saying residents were planning to beat her up. Baitwaki says he's been unsuccessful in his efforts to call her back.
 
Byaruhanga's flight comes amid several complaints about her being cruel to patients. Last week Buhimba Sub county Chairman David Atuhura filed a complaint at police against the nurse. Atuhura told Uganda Radio Network he filed the case on behalf of the many patients she has abused and sometimes slapped when they come for treatment. Atuhura says his move to police followed a complaint to the district health office against the nurse bore no fruits, last month. The nurse is also wanted by police now.
 
The sub county chairman had demanded the district health office to have the cruel nurse transferred.
 
During his monitoring visit to Buhimba on Tuesday Hoima Resident District Commissioner Godfrey Nyakahuma visited the health center and women abused by Byaruhanga presented their concerns.
 
Dolica Mukonyenzi, a mother says Byaruhanga abused her two months ago when she took her child for immunization. Mukonyenzi says trouble started when she requested the nurse to work on her child. She explained that Byaruhanga hurled insults at her and warned she had all the powers to harm the child if she did not back off.
 
Musinguzi says she was threatened by the nurse's utterances, that she did not allow her to inject her baby. She took the child to another health worker.
 
RDC Nyakahuma, who last week directed the nurse's arrest after learning of the complaints, said he would convene a meeting at the hospital and summon the nurse to come and give her side of the story. Nyakahuma says ever since he directed for her arrest she has sent several messengers to his office arguing she is innocent, attributing her woes to rivalry with some of the staff at the health center.
 
The RDC grilled the in charge for taking long to contain Byaruhanga. But Baitwaki insisted he has tried to tame the nurse in vain and also complained to his superiors at the district but nothing is done.
 
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URN could not readily get a comment from the district officer Dr. Joseph Ruyonga over the matter, but according to the sub county chairman David Atuhura, the DHO wondered where to transfer the nurse saying she has been rejected in several health centres. Byaruhanga has worked at Buhimba Health center for the last two years.
 
The case in Buhimba is a clear manifestation that cruelty remains a problem in Uganda's health facilities. Cruelty has been worse in maternity wards leading to death of delivering mothers and newborns. According to the latest official figures from a 2006 health survey, 16 Ugandan women a day die in childbirth, and 76 newborns in every 1,000 do not reach the age of one. The Ministry of Health says a lot has since been achieved in reducing the figure.
 
It says the leading direct causes of these deaths are haemorrhage (26 percent), sepsis (22 percent), obstructed labour (13 percent), unsafe abortion (8 percent) and hypertensive disorders in pregnancy (6 percent), according to the International HIV/AIDS Alliance in Uganda.
 
In addition, rudeness of midwives and nurses is blamed for discouraging mothers from giving birth in health facilities. Many people say, the emotional mistreatment is what drives many mothers to giving birth in the hands of untrained traditional birth attendants.