The Ministry of Finance has inked a fresh loan agreement, securing a USD 30 million deal to support the construction of the forthcoming Uganda Heart Institute (UHI) set to be established in Naguru,” stated a government official.
“The Saudi Fund for Development (SFD) has graciously extended this loan to our nation. Its primary purpose is to facilitate the development and equipping of the UHI, a venture that has been budgeted at a total of 73 million US Dollars,” they added. “The parliamentary approval for this loan was granted in August of the preceding year.”
SFD Chief Executive Sultan Al-Marshad elaborated on the allocation, noting, “The funds have been earmarked for the specific purpose of supporting the civil works, procurement of essential equipment, and furnishing for the Heart Institute.”
The envisaged facility, sprawling across a 10-acre tract of land, boasts a substantial capacity of 222 beds. Plans include the creation of two comprehensive emergency admittance and care units, as well as intensive care and emergency services encompassing catheterization procedure rooms, X-ray facilities, and CT scanning capabilities.
Additionally, the institute will house five fully-fledged clinical and research laboratories.
Dr. John Omagino, the Executive Director of the Uganda Heart Institute, expressed his satisfaction with the financial milestone achieved during the signing event.
“This funding marks the final installment that we had been eagerly awaiting, enabling us to announce the project’s commencement date,” he affirmed.
“The Saudi Fund for Development has generously contributed the largest portion of this project’s financing, while the government of Uganda is co-funding with three million US Dollars,” highlighted the official.
“Furthermore, the Arab Bank for Economic Development in Africa (BADEA) and the OPEC Fund for International Development have each extended loans amounting to 20 million US Dollars.”
Health Minister Dr. Jane Ruth Aceng emphasized the critical need for this new facility, as the existing one at Mulago National Referral Hospital is grappling with severe overcrowding and inadequate resources to address the escalating threat posed by cardiovascular diseases.
“Annually, the Uganda Heart Institute conducts 500-600 surgeries, but a substantial number remain on the waiting list due to insufficient equipment.
However, over time, we have managed to enhance our human resources capacity to perform tertiary surgeries that were previously referred abroad,” Dr. Aceng underscored.