Dr Ronald Reagan Mutebi, an Epidemiologist in the Health Ministry who led the team that assessed the Covid-19 situation in the area, says they noticed several loopholes that make the community susceptible to the contagious virus.
The Health Ministry
Permanent Secretary Dr Diana Atwine has asked security to cordon off Kasensero
Town council in Kyotera district ahead of the indiscriminate Covid19 testing in
She issued the directive during an evaluation meeting with the Greater
Masaka Regional Covid-19 coordination taskforce at Masaka Regional Referral
Hospital on Sunday.
It came after a status
report compiled by a team of Epidemiologists recommended mass testing in Kasensero
Town council because of its a direct link to Tanzania through Lake Victoria. Dr.
Ronald Reagan Mutebi, an Epidemiologist in the Health Ministry who led the team
that assessed the Covid-19 situation in the area says they noticed several
loopholes that make the community susceptible to the contagious virus.
He explained that besides
hosting many alien travellers who access the area by water, there isn’t a
functional tracking and a testing mechanism that can support proper management of coronavirus suspects. Dr Mutebi also revealed that none of the health workers
at local health centres have received any specific training on COVID-19
response despite operating in a high-risk area.
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He also noted that the entire Kasensero Town council had been neglected by the District
Covid-19 Taskforce and the area was being omitted in the status reports because
it was cut off by floods that rendered it inaccessible.
Dr Mutebi also
says the report points out high levels of community reluctance to report recent travellers who are now exposing the entire population to risk because of the
high community transmissions.
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It is upon this
background that Dr Atwine asked security to restrict movements of all people
from the area until they undergo mandatory testing. She declared the lakeshore town council a quarantine area, saying nobody should be allowed to leave before
their status is known.
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She askedhealth authorities to
ensure the flooded area is properly covered by healthcare supplies to avoid any
other health problems. Information obtained from Kyotera district show that
Kasensero Town council is home to over 20,000 involved in fishing activities for survival.