KAMPALA, UGANDA: The Minister for Health, Dr Jane Ruth Aceng has said the 22 Billion Shillings allocated for the deployment and pay of medical interns is not enough to cover the arrears for a whole year.
Dr Aceng while appearing before Parliament on Thursday said the ministry which she heads needs at least UGX 80.4 billion to deploy the interns yet the Ministry of Finance has provided only UGX 8 billion for interns and UGX 2 billion for senior house officers. She, therefore, said that they cannot deploy the interns until they are certain that the UGX 80.4 billion will be provided.
Meanwhile, the Speaker of Parliament Rt Hon Anita Among demanded answers about the payment and deployment of 1,900 medical interns during the plenary sitting.
Ms Among expressed concern that if the interns are not paid, they cannot practice as doctors and the government needs to have a plan for the 1,900 intern doctors and the 4,000 that are incoming.
Henry Musasizi, the State Minister for Finance in charge of General Duties noted that the funding gap of UGX 22 billion for medical interns has been released, and all government entities have until June 30, 2023, to clear all the invoices for the financial year 2022/2023 that have been outstanding in the system.
The Speaker urged the Minister to provide evidence that the money has been forwarded to the Ministry of Health and encouraged the Executive to have a stakeholders’ engagement on the issue of interns for better planning.
She emphasized the need to have a provision for money to pay for sciences and to plan for the people who are already out there.