Uganda: Government Hospitals Fail to Account for Shs1.7b

The State House Health Monitoring Unit (HMU) has named seven health facilities which failed to account for money totaling to Shs1,714, 440, 087 in the 2018/2019 Financial Year.

HMU works to ensure full accountability of medicines and quality health service delivery in the country by ensuring that health workers and key stakeholders are transparent and accountable.

The health facilities include Mubende Regional Referral Hospital, Soroti Regional Referral Hospital, Moroto Regional Referral Hospital, Itojo Hospital and Abim Hospital.

The audit queries range from unaccounted for funds and suspicious accountabilities of missing vouchers and flouting procurement procedures.

Dr Jackson Ojera Abusu, the director of HMU, said the nature of their work is that they respond only to complaints and whistleblowing within the facilities themselves before each of the health facilities is given time to respond.

"Its usually supposed to be two weeks [for them to respond] but sometimes they are given more than that. Very soon we are taking action and their fate will depend on whether their explanation is the truth or not," Dr Abusu said on Thursday.

The findings were unveiled during the 25th Joint Sector Review Mission and 11th National Health Assembly.

Dr Alfred Ogwang, the director of Moroto Regional Referral Hospital, said he was not aware of the unaccounted for funds except those that they did not utilise.

"What I am aware of is failure to utilise money for salaries because people [health workers] don't want to come to Moroto. For example, we are supposed to pay a consultant," Dr Ogwang said.

Dr Richard Bakamuturak, the Ntungamo District Health Officer and an official at Uganda Nurses and Midwives Council is also alleged to have failed to account for some money.

Ms Angelah Ilakut, the acting registrar of the Nurses and Midwives Council, refused to comment on the matter saying she is just holding the position in an acting capacity.

"You are asking a wrong person. Those people who were there are the ones who could have mismanaged the funds. The right person to ask is already interdicted," Ms Ilakut said.

Exercise

In the same period, HMU had a coverage of 36 districts including Luweero, Soroti, Mubende, Abim, Arua, Yumbe, Nebbi, Zombo, Maracha, Koboko, Amudat, Jinja , Kayunga, Luwero, Kabarole, and Kyenjojo.

Other districts included: Kyegegwa, Kamwenge, Kibaale, Hoima, Masaka, Iganga, Isingiro, Bukedea, Omoro, Gulu, Mbale, Sheema, Lira, Amudat, Buikwe, Namisindwa, Mityana, Wakiso and Paliisa

A total of 64 health facilities were monitored in the same period of time.

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