Adjumani District Chairman cries foul over acute drug shortage

Adjumani District Councillors in a Plemnary session (Photo: Amacha Goli)

ADJUMANI, UGANDA: The Adjumani district chairman Mr. Anyama Ben has decried the acute shortage of drugs the health facilities in the district are experiencing and called for immediate intervention of central government to avert morbidity.

Mr. Anyama Ben who was yesterday, September 14, 2021, addressing the 1st Ordinary council meeting of the sixth council said his fresh government has nothing to do with the massive stock out of drugs and blamed the central government for the crisis.

“I know some of my detractors will start making comparisons with the previous council but such comparisons must be treated with all the contempt it deserves”. He held.

He said the National Medical Stores has issued circulars in August notifying all local governments that the next circle of drugs delivery will be in December 2021, since government is constrained with Covid -19 responses.

Mr. Anyama said, his office will now engage UNHCR and other development partners in the refugee operations to try and save the situation since government has pronounced itself on the matter very clearly.

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The Adjumani district health officer [DHO] Dr.Drametu Dominic in a separate interview today, September 15, 2021, concurred with the statement of the district chairman describing the situation as “worrying”.

Dr. Drametu said, his team has compiled a list of essential drugs and other medical supplies that are in urgent need and forwarded it to the UN refugee Agency for attention because December is too far given the level of drug stockouts.

In the alternative, Drametu said he has instructed the in charge of all health units to use the Results-Based Funds [RBC] for procuring essential drugs since some of the health facilities are lacking pain killers.

Adjumani District Building

By Wednesday morning, mothers who had reported for labor at Adjumani general referral hospital were advised to buy surgical gloves, gauze, cotton wool, and most of the drugs that were prescribed.

The medics in the ward said, without those sundries, it would be difficult to touch on mothers and the only alternative is to advise them to buy from private pharmacies.

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The hospital pharmacy which used to be a beehive of activities as patients rush to receive drugs has virtually been deserted since essential drugs are very thin.

The district receives shs 890m worth of drugs which given that the drug per capita in Uganda for the financial year 2021-2022, is shs 1.800, and the last circle of drugs in the district was delivered in June 2021.

Adjumani district has got 44 health facilities that were initially established to serve the host population of about 250.000, but with the influx of refugees from Southern Sudan whose population is bulging and threatening to dominate that of the host community, the situation is almost turning to agonize.

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