Health centre IV struggles to offer maternity services

Butenga Health Center IV in Bukomansimbi district

By URN

 Butenga Health Center IV in Bukomansimbi district is struggling to provide maternal health services due to shortages of medical supplies.

The Health Center IV is currently operating as the main hospital facility for the Bukomansimbi district, serving a population of more than 150,000 people.

Harriet Nakamya, the Assistant District Health Officer and the in-charge Maternal and Child Health unit at the facility, says their abilities to offer the required services are limited by inadequate medical supplies by National Medical Stores- NMS.

“We register a higher number of patients compared to the volume of medical supplies from the government which can only meet the demands of an ordinary Health Centre IV, which under the Ministry of Health stricture is meant to serve a constituency,” she said

According to Nakamya, the facility exhausts its medical supplies and other sundries in the first three weeks, leaving them stuck of patients for the rest of the period before another supply is made.  On average according to records, the Health Centre receives at least 50 cases of people that require the child and maternal health-related services.

Nakamya narrates that sometimes, they are forced to make referrals for medical conditions that would be managed at the facility if the supplies were available at the health facility and that this comes with high-cost implications on the patients who require moving to Masaka Regional Referral Hospital or resort to provide service providers.

  
Dr Ponsiano Mwebe, the Health Centre’s Medical Superintendent wants the facility elevated to district General Hospital as a sustainable solution to the chronic inadequacy of supplies. He says that they regularly receive patients coming from the neighbouring districts of Sembabule and Kalungu, hence widening their scope of services beyond one district of Bukomansimbi.  


Fred Nyenje Kayiira, the Bukomansimbi LCV Chairperson says the district is in touch with their area Members of Parliament to make their cause towards the elevation of the health centre to hospital status.  

He says that besides the lack of supplies, the health centre needs to have more buildings and specialized equipment, whose construction and procurement requires direct government funding.      

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