24 February 2024

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North's First

5 years of operations in Lango, Rhites North explains the progress

Minister Kawooya said all the equipment installed by Rhites North Lango in government health facilities will be under the custody of the government.
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Minister Anifa Kawooya and officials from North Rights and USAID. Photo by Aceng Patricia.

Last Updated on: 12th May 2023, 08:30 pm

Lira, May 12, 2023: Five years of serving the communities in Lango sub-region, Rhites North Lango has recorded tremendous, measurable achievements across the health sector. 

During the handover of three fully renovated and equipped operational theatres, along with a maternity ward and newborn care units, Rhites North Lango disclosed their end of operations.

Medical supplies to the facilities are worth shs800 million, the NGO has revealed. 

The medical equipment was handed over at Orum, Dokolo and Ogur Health Centers IVs.

State minister for health in charge of General Duties, Anifa Kawooya hails North Rhites Lango for its contributions towards the improvement of health services in Uganda.

Speaking at Orum Health Center IV during the same event, minister Kawooya said all the equipment installed by Rhites North Lango in government health facilities will be under the custody of the government.

In her remarks, Dr Pamella Donggo, the deputy chief of the party, USAID North Lango said, “This project boosted the fight against Tuberculosis,  HIV and AIDS among others and as a result, in the years between 2018 and 2022, deliveries doubled at these facilities with 80,000  mothers choosing to give birth in a health centre or hospital.” 

She added that childhood illness was managed by immunization, getting a gain of 89% in the year 2022 from 59% in 2019.

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She attributed Lira’s referral cases to the broken refrigerator and regular power outages in Orum HC IV, to blood shortages where mothers with their children would walk for 70 kilometres to receive necessary care. 

In record, Otuke district refers an average of 350 women per year for obstetric and newborn-related cases. Sadly, some of these die during transfers. 

A mother, Sharon from Otuke who shared her story said, “For 32 weeks while pregnant, I experienced danger labor signs like pains with bleeding and I immediately went to Okwongo Healthenterr III but it could not be contained and was later transferred to Orum HC IV.”

Sharon’s story continues. “When I underwent an emergency operation and blood transfusion, my baby was weighing just 2.4kgs and would struggle with breathing, and was placed on oxygen.”

However, with the professional care at the facility, she said they were discharged a week later in good shape.

Preterm neonatal mortality contributes substantially to the high neonatal mortality globally. In Uganda, preterm neonatal mortality accounts for 31% of all neonatal deaths. 

Previous studies have shown variability in mortality rates by healthcare setting. One study was done by Mbarara Regional Referral Hospital.

Every year, World celebrates November 17, as Prematurity Day and in the 2020 celebrations, Uganda said it was making efforts to reduce preterm births in a bid to curb child mortality 

Preterm birth is the birth of a baby before 37 weeks of gestation, according to World Health Organization. Globally, 15 million infants are born preterm each year, and one million die due to prematurity, according to the Ministry of Health figures. 

Over 60 per cent of preterm births occur in Africa and South Asia.

Uganda is ranked 28th worldwide in preterm births, with an estimated 13.6 per 1,000 live births. Approximately 226,000 babies are born too soon every year and of these, 12,500 children under five die due to preterm complications.

Francis Abola, Otuke district chairman called for the upgrade of all health HCIIIs in Lango to HCIV status. This, Abola said, will improve health service delivery.

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