Uganda government rehires retired health workers

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The Ugandan government has started redeploying retired senior health specialists in efforts to boost health service delivery in the country, reports the New Vision.

According to Uganda’s State Minister for Health in charge of general duties Sarah Opendi, the government has started stationing the retired health workers which, senior surgeons in different fields, paediatricians and physicians among others, in various public health facilities.

“Currently 1 doctor is serving 17,000 Ugandans. When we visited hospitals, we found out that some facilities lacked senior specialists and that is why we recalled them to be redeployed,’ said Sarah Opendi, during the 5th African Platform forum on human resources for health in Kampala.

Ugandan doctors whom retired at the age of 60 years as per law have been given two year contracts.

The Minister for Health further added that the Ugandan government is working towards producing more doctors by awarding loans to university science students. Annually, Uganda produces 200 medical student graduates from Makerere University graduates, 60 from Gulu University and 60 from Mbarara University.

Unfortunately, most of the doctors migrate to Botswana, Kenya, South Africa and Rwanda for better payment.

“Worldwide, there is a shortage of 6 million health workers. We need to make sure that health workers are paid in time, and their services supported. If a midwife needs gloves to deliver a mother, she should have them in time,” said Prof. Francis Omaswa, the executive director of African Center for Global health and social transformation (ACHEST), adding thet in order for Ugandan to strengthen its health system, there is a need to train more doctors and retain them.

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