By Joshua Nahamya
Mbarara Regional Referral Hospital (MRRH) is erecting a permanent isolation centre funded by the ministry of health.
The facility, which is aimed at boosting the hospital’s service, is expected to be completed by the end of May.
Officials revealed the development during a three-day covid-19 regional training for district health officials which happened a few days ago.
The facility, which will house a 36-bed isolation unit, will cost Shs600million.
Construction kicked off three weeks back.
Dr. Rose Muhindo, a lead physician for Covid-19, says the pandemic activated the move to set up the facility since the government was initially reluctant on providing funds.
“To be honest, it has only come because of Covid-19. We had wished for several years that we get a permanent isolation unit but we didn’t have funds,” Dr. Muhindo said.
“So I can confidently say that it came because of Covid and it will remain our isolation centre for any other outbreak.”
The hospital’s current isolation unit has only 36 beds, which is small for a referral hospital, according to Dr. Muhindo.
During the training, Dr Johnson Kabwishwa, a medical superintendent at Kitagata Hospital, asked the ministry of health to provide a permanent call center at Mbarara Regional Referral Hospital.
“Why are we only mindful of a call center only when there is an outbreak like Covid-19? Mbarara regional referral hospital being a centre of all the cases in the region should be having a permanent call centre with a free call line other than having these charging call lines that neutralize the Wanainchi ’s little earning,” Dr. Kabwishwa said.
At Mbarara Hospital, over 15000 samples have been tested for the coronavirus.