Betty Akello, an enrolled midwife attached to the facility explains that the Health center cannot handle any maternity related cases currently, a reason they are referring them to Lira Regional Referral Hospital or Ogur HCIV.
Subsequently, the room ceilings from the general and maternity wards also followed, forcing mothers who were at the unit to sleep under their beds.
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Service delivery has grounded to a halt at Aromo
HC III in Aromo Sub County in Lira district following the collapse of the ceiling
in all wards including the maternity suit.
The ceiling collapsed on June 24th, 2020 as the surgeon was in the process of conducting start an
evacuation procedure on a woman with incomplete abortion.
the ceiling in the general and maternity wards also collapsed forcing the mothers
in the unit to sleep under their beds. “I missed being hit narrowly but both I and the
patient are safe. The ceiling had multiple leaks and now the whole maternity is
unsafe for mothers and staffs and needs urgent attention,” the surgeon is
quoted to have said.
The mother was immediately referred to Lira Regional
Referral Hospital, which is 35Kilometers away for further management.
Most of the patients in the wards were
discharged and others referred to other facilities the next morning. There were
six mothers in the ward.
The dilapidated maternity ward was built in 2007 under
the Canadian Physicians for Aid and Relief (CPAR) project in Uganda and has
never been renovated. Betty Akello, an enrolled midwife attached to the facility explains that the Health center cannot handle any maternity related cases currently, a reason they are referring them to Lira Regional Referral Hospital or Ogur HCIV.
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In the 2017/2018 financial year, Aromo Sub County allocated Shillings 16 million for the
renovation of the main ward. The contract was awarded to Atimo Investment Ltd,
which didn’t complete the renovation works.
Robert Odongo, a resident of the area and member of the
Health Unit Management team, says they had severally reported the problem to
the Sub County and District authorities but no action was taken. He
wondered why the District has taken long to act.
//Cue in: “Jami nii duc…
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Agnes Atim Opeto, an expectant mother who has been receiving
antenatal care services from the facility is now worried that the temporary
closure of the maternity ward will endanger her life and that of her unborn
child. “With all the problems brought by corona, I am expected to walk from
Aromo to Lira? How will I do that? I don’t have even a bicycle to ride! I will
just stay at home and wait for death,” she said.
Another woman who had brought her child to the
Outpatient Department- OPD, which is equally closed said “I know how painful it
is to go through labor and to say a woman on labor should be taken up to Ogur
or Lira is just crazy at least for me I can go take my son to a clinic. Let me
tell you, many women will die here!”
David Elic, the Aromo Sub County LC III Chairperson
says the problem of the health facility has been a recurring but the district
seems unbothered. According to Elic, the council inspected the facility
recently and allocated Shillings 15 million for its renovation in the next
financial year budget.
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He explained that most mothers who cannot go to Ogur HCIV or Lira
Regional Referral Hospital have resorted to traditional birth attendants for
//Cue in: “This season of…
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The authorities are now calling on well- wishers and
development partners to support the renovation of the maternity ward. James
Ocen says plans are underway to shift the maternity ward to a youth center that
was constructed by Concerned Parents to handle emergency cases.
Aromo HC III receives clients from Omoro
and Pader districts in Acholi and Otuke, Kole and Lira districts in Lango sub