Mulago National Referral Hospital management has expressed concern over a proposed budget cut of Shs3 billion for maintenance of medical equipment, saying it will greatly affect operations of the hospital.
According to the 2023/2023 Budget Framework Paper, Mulago requires Shs8.2 billion for medical equipment maintenance but only Shs5.2 billion has been allocated.
The Acting Executive Director, Dr. Rosemary Byanyima presented the ministerial policy statement to the Health Committee on Tuesday, 04 April 2023.
She asked the Members of Parliament to advocate for full financing of medical equipment maintenance.
“We do not know how we will manage to work because we are even scaling up and taking over from what ROKO construction company was doing,” said Byanyima.
She also appealed for increased budget for medical supplies saying that the allocated Shs13.5 billion is insufficient.
“The optimal budget for medical supplies is Shs100 billion. The hospital is under stress and needs support,” she said.
Hon. Esther Mbayo (NRM, Luuka District) urged the MPs to ensure that the budget cut on medical equipment is not effected.
“How do we move if medical equipment is not maintained. This equipment is for treating human beings and not animals. We should fight against this budget cut,” Mbayo said.
Committee Chairperson, Dr, Charles Ayume said that the committee will interest the Budget Committee into considering the National Referral Hospital in the supplementary budget so that critical areas are catered for.
He particularly noted the need to increase the budget of medical supplies from Shs13.5 billion to at least Shs20 billion.
“Shs13.5 billion out of Shs100 billion is just about 12 per cent. How do we scale this and ring fence some of it for specialised services?” Ayume said.
Hon. Nicholas Kamara (FDC, Kabale Municipality) however, called on the hospital’s management to address the increasing cases of extortion of unsuspecting patients by health workers.
“People are being forced to undergo laparoscopy surgery which is expensive because they have been convinced by consultants that the open surgery is dangerous and can lead to death,” Kamara said.
Distributed by APO Group on behalf of Parliament of the Republic of Uganda.