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Uganda: Museveni tasks doctors to focus on disease prevention

Kampala. President Museveni has asked scientists and Ugandans at large to prevent diseases so that the country can save money and use it for other priority areas.

Mr Museveni, who spoke at the third Grande Doctors Conference in Kampala on Saturday night, said district leaderships were not doing enough to sensitise the public on how to prevent diseases.

“Hygiene, immunisation and nutrition behaviour change and malaria are the major causes of diseases,” Mr Museveni said.

He added: “The district medical health officials should be the one to educate people on what to eat. Instead they spend a lot of time abusing Museveni. We can eradicate malaria by dealing with mosquitoes.

How can the medical system fail to come up with a system to preserve this?”
The conference run under the theme “Transforming Service Delivery For Universal Health Coverage.”

Ministry of Health statistics show that between 23 and 40 per cent of all outpatients and 50 per cent of all inpatient hospital admissions arise from malaria attacks.

Malaria management alone takes 10 per cent of the ministry’s budget, this, Mr Museveni, said, is a cost that can be stopped if people sleep under mosquito treated nets which government is already providing.

He also assured scientists of fatty salaries because “those who have a very big impact on the economy are scientists.”

The Ministry of Health Permanent Secretary, Dr Diana Atwine, said areas that lack expertise will benefit from telemedicine that the ministry is about to roll out.

“We want to allay anxiety and we are going to equip the RRH with modern equipment that you don’t have to refer a patient. We are going to actually have telemedicine that a specialist in Kampala can guide a specialist in Karamoja such that even where there are gaps, we can use technology,” she said.

But Dr Ruth Aceng, the Health minister, said many health workers need to change attitude towards work if service delivery in the all-important sector is to improve.

By Daily Monitor

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