Uganda: Oxygen shortage hits Moroto hospital

Oxygen shortage hits Moroto hospital

Moroto Regional Referral Hospital currently has 18 patients at the Covid-19 treatment unit all needing oxygen support. File Photo

Moroto, Uganda | THE INDEPENDENT | Moroto Regional Referral Hospital is facing a shortage of oxygen for critically ill Covid-19 patients.

Moroto Regional Referral Hospital has an oxygen plant but its current production rate is much lower than its capacity of 15 cylinders per day.

According to the hospital director, Dr Ben Watmon, the plant produces less than half of the required oxygen, making Covid-19 treatment difficult. He says because of this, the hospital struggles to provide oxygen to critically ill patients, sometimes affecting general management of Covid 19 cases.

He adds that the situation is made worse by the unstable power supply to the hospital due to constant power blackouts, forcing the hospital to bring in oxygen from Mbale and Soroti after every two days.

The low level of oxygen production comes at a time when the district has recorded the highest number of Covid-19 patients ever.

Currently, there are 18 patients at the Covid 19 Treatment Unit at Moroto Hospital all needing oxygen support with an additional 20 under home based care.
On Friday, 45 new cases were confirmed in Moroto district, taking the total number of active confirmed cases to 83, the highest number recorded at the time since Covid 19 outbreak in March last year.

Moroto Regional Referral Hospital has handled 293 cases, 268 discharged and 3 deaths.

According to Dr Hans Lokale, the District Health Officer, the district Covid-19 taskforce has embarked on risk communication, testing and tracing of contacts to mitigate community infections.



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