Gov’t Urged to Create an Ambulance Body
The Shadow Minister of Health Dr. Timothy Batuwa has challenged the government to create an Autonomous Emergency Services body to manage ambulance services in the country to save the country from the burden of dilapidated ambulances that are not fit for use.
This comes after an ambulance caught fire this week in Bunyangabu district and killed two people including a Nurse and a patient.
Earlier this week an ambulance belonging to Bwera General hospital in Kasese burst into flames, killing two and injuring two of its occupants as it was rushing a patient to Kiruddu Hospital in Kampala. This left a shock to ambulance operators. At parliament, ambulance operators have mourned the victims in a special way by sounding ambulance sirens for a minute at midday.
Winnie Atima a Nursing officer at Parliament decried the bad state of ambulances, especially in upcountry areas that are not well equipped to ensure the safety of patients and operators.
The shadow minister of health Dr. Timothy Batuwa has also paid tribute to the victims and called on the government to step up funding of emergency medical services. Batuwa expressed a need to create an autonomous Emergency Medical Services body to manage ambulance services across the country to save hospitals from the burden of heavy ambulance maintenance costs.
Dr. Batuwa who represents Jinja City Division West has also called for a review of the safety standards of ambulances used in the country especially those bought by members of Parliament which are mostly below standards.
In the proposed 2022/23 financial year budget, the ministry of health seeks Shs5bn to fund the national ambulance network but money has not been made available by the ministry of finance.