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Kyegegwa Motorcycle Ambulances Remain Grounded :: Uganda Radionetwork
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Kyegegwa Motorcycle Ambulances Remain Grounded

Each Health Centre III in Kyegegwa district received one motorbike ambulance. Others were stationed at the Sub County headquarters to transport patients to health facilities. However, the ambulances are grounded even as people continue to face difficulty.
07 Jul 2016 14:51

Audio 2

A motorcycle ambulance project piloted in Kyegegwa district three years ago has stalled, affecting public access to health facilities.

The district received 30 motorcycle ambulances from Baylor Uganda in 2013, to help patients' especially pregnant women to access healthcare facilities, which were previously out of reach.

Each health centre III in the district received one motorbike, while others were stationed at the Sub County headquarters to transport patients to health facilities. However, the ambulances are grounded even as people continue to face difficulty.

Innocent Baguma, the senior health officer of Kyaka County says that some of the ambulances are grounded due to lack of funds for repair and fuel. He adds that currently, only three are operational.

Residents however blame the district for neglecting the ambulances, depriving them of better services.

Sarah Birungi, a resident of Kyegegwa Sub County says that during the rainy season, the road from her home to the nearest Health Centre IV is impassable.

//Cue in: "The roads…

Cue out: "…buy fuel."//

Charles Magezi, another resident says that the lack of transport to the health facilities has forced some residents to turn to unskilled health workers. He wants the district to repair the motorbikes to enable people easily access health facilities.

//Cue in: "the situation…

Cue out: "…it's embarrassing."//

Kyegegwa District Health Officer Bernard Kajura says that they expect to repair the grounded ambulances in the next quarter of the financial year because the district currently has no funds.

In 2012, government through the Ministry of Health planned to use motorcycle ambulances to transport patients who need emergency health care services in the health facilities across the country instead of vehicles.

The then State Minister for Health Dr Richard Nduhura said that the government was finding it hard to cope with high costs of purchasing new ambulances coupled with the high maintenance costs.

Poor access to health facilities is blamed for the high maternal mortality rate standing at 310 deaths per 100,000 live births, according to 2013 figures by the World Health Organisation.

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