Uganda: Mpigi Authorities Set Up COVID-19 Isolation Centre

Health officials in Mpigi District have set up an Isolation centre at Mpigi Health Centre IV as they strengthen efforts to fight the spread of Covid-19 spread.

Also, a district Covid-19 taskforce has been launched by Minister of Trade, Industry and Cooperatives, Ms Amelia Kyambadde.

The taskforce will be headed by Ms Rosemary Byabasaija, the Mpigi Resident District Commissioner (RDC) supported by Dr Margaret Nannozi (District Health Officer), Captain Godfrey Matovu (district internal security officer ), Mr Herbert Nuwagaba ( district police commander ), Dr Emmanuel Nanyumba (Covid-19 focal person), among others.

According to Dr Jubilee Abwoli, the officer in-charge of Mpigi Health Centre IV, the overwhelming number of Covid-19 suspects forced them to use the newly constructed theatre as an isolation centre to help them fight the spread of the virus.

"Last week, we received almost 41 call alerts and our surveillance team managed to respond to 30 (that is 73 percent response). Out of the 30, only four people had signs of Covid-19 and were rushed to Mulago National Referral Hospital but fortunately, they all tested negative. We thank God that Mpigi has not yet record a case of Covid-19," he said.

Like in many other districts, Ms Nannozi listed some challenges like lack of personal protective equipment like facemasks, gloves, aprons, gumboots and hand sanitisers which puts lives of health workers at risk.

"Lack of protective gear forces some health workers to run away from all patients. We are in danger and we may end up losing this battle because of lack of the necessary requirements. Fuel is also still a challenge to us and the three vehicles that we have are not enough to do the work. Some vehicles are still in the hands of government workers and we could have used police pickups, but they are all grounded. Can you imagine we have only one functional police vehicle in the whole district!" she said.

The district has an emergency budget of Shs58.5million and officials expect to raise this money from Good Samaritans especially lower local government officials and other politicians.

It's due to these challenges that Ms Kyambadde donated Shs10 million to the district Covid-19 taskforce and also purchased some essential items for the isolation centre. Some of the items she donated include; three beds, three mattresses, mosquito nets, dustbins, detergents, basins, face masks, gloves and clinical instruments.

"I will continue to support you but we shouldn't forget the people in the islands especially Bunjakko and Buyiga because there's an influx of Tanzanians and Rwandans whom can export the virus from their countries to our area. Let's fight together, sanitise every second and use water every minute," she said.

Regular hand washing with soap and water or use of hand sanitisers are among the key measures recommended by the Ministry of Health to avert the spread of coronavirus . Others include; observing social distancing, avoiding shaking hands, avoiding touching of soft parts like mouth ,eyes and nose, staying home and self-isolating from others in the household if one feels unwell.

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