The Speaker of Parliament, Rt. Hon. Rebecca Kadaga on Monday morning presided over the handover of medical equipment to Kalangala Health Centre. The equipment were mobilized by Ugandans in diaspora mobilised.

During the handover, Rt. Hon. Rebecca Kadaga  called on government not to phase out Health Centre IIs on the islands of Kalangala so as to cater for the demanding health needs of the population.

Kadaga said that the Ministry of Health plans to phase out Health Centres IIs and replace them with Health Centre IIIs.
“How do you distribute Health Centre IIIs on the islands? I think the Health centre IIs should be distributed on all the islands to ease access to health care,” she said.

The Speaker made these remarks while officiating at a handover of medical equipment to Kalangala Health Centre IV at a function held at the district headquarters on Saturday, 28th January 2017.

The District Chairperson, Willy Lugoloobi had earlier said that there are 84 islands that make up Kalangala district with only nine having 17 health centres.
“Most of the  islands do not have health centres; for one to access a health facility for treament, you have to spend over shs100,000 on transport,” he said.

Lugoloobi added that the district has now taken the initiative to avail temporary health services to the different islands every three months.
“We now carry out health outreach programmes every three months.  Do we now have to ask the people to plan their illnesses every quarter?” Lugoloobi asked satirically.

The Speaker in response reiterated the call for water ambulance services so that people can move to hospitals in Masaka.

On the donation of the medical equipment, Kadaga said that those are fruits of her continued attendance of the Uganda North America Association (UNAA) Conventions.
“There were people abusing me for attending these meetings saying I was wasting time. Let them come and see the products of my movements,” she added.

The Minister of Health, Ruth Aceng said that a hospital will be constructed in Kalangala with works expected to start in 2018 after securing of funds.
“The state of the current health facility is not acceptable for the population of Kalangala. The President directed that a hospital must be built here and all sub-counties in the islands must have health centre IIIs and IVs,” Aceng said.

The Speaker later moved to Rakai District to also hand over equipment to Kakuuto Health Centre IV.

Ruth Aceng said Kakuuto Health Centre IV was poorly planned making it difficult for patients to access the desired facilities.

The Minister said that the facility requires reorganisation and improvement.
“I have noted that  the facility was poorly planned. Getting to the theatre is hard for women,“ she said.

“We need to improve the infrastructure and to construct more facilities and reorganise their flow.”

District and health officers asked government to reconstruct the theatre, which was damaged by the recent earth quake.

The Rakai district LC5 Chair, Ms. Agnes Namusiitwa, appealed to government to expand and improve the children’s, women and maternity wards.
The Speaker, while touring the facility, named a new born baby girl, Rebecca.

Kadaga said the medical equipment was part of the donation sourced from Medi-share in the US, a process that started in 2013.

She said that the Ministry of Health would send personnel to train staff on how to operate and use the equipment.
Henry Patrick Oyuru from Coca-Cola Beverages Africa said the equipment, which arrived in August 2016 cost over Shs1.5 billion.
“We are here because of the passion and constant desire to improve the life of every Ugandan, regardless of political inclination and/or other affiliations,” he said.