Wednesday, April 12, 2017

#Uganda health workers arrested for treating people who can't afford expensive private health care

At least 17 health workers in Mbale District have been arrested for treating patients and operating private clinics without requisite documents.
The suspects were arrested on Tuesday during a crack-down exercise conducted by the district health officials and Allied Health Professionals’ Council.
The crackdown also left several private clinics and drug shops closed over operating without licences and unhygienic condition.
Some of the affected clinics include, Elgon Medical Clinic and Laboratory, Victory Clinic, Nylon Family Clinic and Mbale Joint Medical Clinic among others.
The eastern region health supervisor, Mr Peter Ocen, said the crackdown was aimed at getting rid of quack health workers and unlicensed health facilities, which have put people’s lives at a risk.
“We discovered that most private clinics are managed by unqualified people. This silent issue is leading to loss of lives and disabilities among unsuspecting patients, with some getting related complications,” Mr Ocen, said.
Mr Ocen explained that Mbale District has only 117 registered private clinics yet the number is far higher.
“During our inspection we found that most of the units are operating outside the law and there is no compliance at all,” he said.
Mr Micheal Mubiru, the central region, regional health supervisor, said most of the fake health workers arrested are employed by doctors or health practitioners who own the units.
“It disheartening because most of the private clinics that we have closed are owned by medical workers, but they deliberately flout rightful procedures,” he said.
Suspects speak out
Some of the arrested health workers while speaking to Daily Monitor denied any wrongdoing insisting that it’s their employers fault. “I informed my boss, who is a doctor that I failed my medical school examination and he said no problem, you can work,” one of them, said.
The Mbale District health supervisor, Mr Ayub Madoi, said the district health team has done enough sensitisation, supervision and monitoring but some clinic owners are adamant.
The district police commander, Mr Godwin Ochaki, confirmed the arrest and said the suspects will be charged accordingly.

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