Kabale Regional Referral Hospital and Kamukira Health Centre IV in Kabale Municipality have run out of drugs used in the support treatment of COVID-19 and other general illnesses.
There is no approved therapy for the Covid-19, which can cause severe pneumonia and acute respiratory distress syndrome in some patients.
According to Ivan Mubangyizi, Kabale Municipality Health Officer says that Kamukira Health Centre IV lacks azithromycin, steroid treatment dexamethasone, supplements -Zinc, Vitamin C and D which are used for support treatment for COVID-19.
The local health facility provides services to over 10,000 people every month and was also given a responsibility to monitor Covid-19 patients under the Home-Based Care system in Central and Southern Divisions.
Rodney Tabaruka, a senior Pharmacist at Kabale regional referral hospital and also the Kigezi region in charge of drug supplies told MPs on the Covid-19 task force that the hospital currently has no essential drugs such as Tocilizumab, Budesonide inhaler, Rivaroxaban, Clexane, Pipracil, Flucamox, Enoxaparin sodium.
In some instances with critically ill patients attendants of Covid-19 patients have to purchase the drugs which are scare and expensive says Tabaruka and cites an example of Tocilizumab drug which costs 3.4 Million Shillings a dose.
Alfred Besigensi, Kabale District Health Officer says that most of the essential drugs recommended for managing Covid-19 were not part of the kit which is supplied by National Medical Stores (NMS).
He also says that some of the drugs like Tcilizumab, Budesonide, Clexane, Pipracil, Flucamox, Enoxaparin sodium are rarely supplied to government health facilities by the National Medical Stores.
Besigensi however says that the district task force will put the essential drugs in the procurement plan within this financial year.
But, Thaddeus Nicholas Kamara, Kabale Municipality Member of Parliament and Francis Mwijukye, Member of Parliament for Buhweju County attributes the stock out of such essential drugs to the Ministry of Health’s poor planning.
They wonder why the ministry did not project earlier that there will be another Covid-19 wave so that they prepare for it.