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Lack of Ambulance Services in West Nile Districts Hindering Referral of Covid-19 Patients

In Arua district, there is only one ambulance, which is inadequate to manage Covid19 cases in the district. Paul Drileba, the acting District Health Officer says the situation has become difficult to manage in the four sub-counties. Since they struggle to ensure timely referral of cases to Arua.
Arua RDC Festus Ayikobua addressing leaders from Terego, Madi Okollo and Arua City during a meeting on status of covid19 pandemic in Arua.

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Districts in the West Nile region are struggling to manage the covid-19 pandemic due to a lack of Ambulances.

Following the resurgence of the second wave of the Corona Virus, some of the districts require referral to Arua and Mulago national referral hospital.

In the Arua district, there is only one ambulance, which is inadequate to manage Covid19 cases in the district.  Paul Drileba, the acting District Health Officer says the situation has become difficult to manage in the four sub-counties. Since they struggle to ensure timely referral of cases to Arua.

// Cue in; We are also grappling.…//

Cue out; delivery is stagnated.…. //  

According to records from Madi Okollo district, out of 1,000 cumulative tests done, 60 covid19 positive cases have been recorded of which 11 are refugees with five deaths.  

Dr George Angupale the acting Health Officer Madi Okollo in a status update said lack of transport to reach out to sensitize communities about covid-19 has forced some residents to a different perception about the reality of the Covid19 pandemic.

   // Cue in; We don’t have a.…//

Cue out; Covid19 is not an issue.…. //  

In Terego district, which has a population of 401,000 people, (243,000 Nationals and 168,700 refugees) 117 positive cases of Covid19 have been recorded with 3 deaths since the operationalization of the district on July 1st this year.  

Mathew Bakole the Assistant District Health officer Terego says that the lack of an ambulance and other emergencies is making it difficult for them to save lives. Bakole says that in addition to not having an ambulance for referrals and means of transport to reach the communities, they are also constrained by the lack of a treatment centre for Covid19 positive cases.

This according to Bakole has resulted in a huge covid19 burden on the young district.

// Cue in; We do have some hiccups. //

Cue out; come from the community.…. //

Similarly, in Arua City, which also took effect on July 1st 2021, the City Taskforce is struggling to manage the pandemic amidst challenges.   Dr Pontius Apangu Arua City Principal Health Officer explained that they have recorded 102 positive cases and three deaths since July and 7 cases under treatment. 

Dr Apangu says that coordinating Covid19 and other health activities in the two divisions of Central and Ayivu has become difficult due to lack of transport means. He explains that the two ambulances donated to them are not adequately equipped to transport Covid19 patients.    

// Cue in; As a City when we.…//

Cue out; coordinating health services.…. //  

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