The Prime Minister Dr Ruhakana Rugunda has called upon health workers to put more effort on improving the quality of health care offered to the people and also ensure that they are present at their duty stations to attend to the patients.
Dr. Rugunda said Government is doing all it can to support the health sector and also improve the welfare of the health workers.
The Premier made the remarks while officiating at the closure of the 26th Uganda National Association of Community and Occupational health annual scientific conference and the 16th Dr.Mathew Lukwiya Memorial lecture at Hotel Africana in Kampala.
Prime Minister Dr Ruhakana Rugunda said the consistency in holding the Mathew Lukwiya memorial lectures is a demonstration of the solidarity of health workers.
Dr Lukwiya was the first doctor to make the alarm of the Ebola epidemic in the year 2000 and with other colleagues like Dr. Kule, paid the highest sacrifice when they lost their lives while serving the Ugandans afflicted by Ebola.
Dr Lukyiya’s last words were: “I am going to die now. I pray that no one would ever have to die of this disease again”
“The Mathew Lukwiya memorial lecture reminds of the vulnerability of the health workers in the health system,” said the Premier.
He said health workers are known to work for long hours and may not have appropriate protection in the face of the many hazards encountered in the health service environment.
Dr Rugunda congratulated the Uganda National Association of Community and Occupational health for the 30 years of service to the nation and the people of Uganda.
He said whereas Government can provide health services, real health can only be achieved by what people do themselves particularly in the areas of health promotion and disease prevention.
“We need to move swiftly and ensure that Universal health care is a reality,” Dr Rugunda said adding that the work done in the health sector is a great investment for the country and there is no doubt that health financing is a priority.
Dr Christine Kirunga Tashobya who delivered the lecture urged government to institute progressive economic policies to facilitate reduction in income inequalities, emphasizing that there is a strong relationship between health, income and life expectancy.
She also called for universal health coverage, health financing and improvement of the welfare of health workers, improvement of human resources for health and National health insurance scheme as a solution for some of the county’s health financing challenges.