Expectant Mothers Turned Away From Health Centres Over Lack of Paraffin

Comments 1624 Views Gulu, Uganda

In short
Expectant mothers in Gulu district are being turned away by health personnel because of lack of paraffin to light up the labor wards.

Expectant mothers in Gulu district are being turned away by health personnel because of lack of paraffin to light up the labor wards.

The mothers who are in labour pain are told to seek help elsewhere because the four Health Centre Threes in the town are not connected to the national power grid.

The health centres which include Ayuwee and Bardege use lamps to provide lighting in the labour wards during night hours.

The residents however say often time, the medical personnel at the units tell expectant mothers to either go to Gulu Referral Hospital or Lacor Hospital as a precaution against the risk of delivering in darkness.

The national power lines, however, pass very close to all the four affected health centres.
Beatrice Komakech, a midwife at Bardege Health Centre Four, admits that they are sometimes forced to turn away expectant mothers from the health unit because of lack of power in the labour ward.

Komakech explains that the health centre usually runs out of paraffin to use in the lanterns. She says in circumstances where they run out of paraffin, they are forced to tell the patients to go to either Gulu Referral Hospital or Lacor Hospital to avoid the risk of delivering in darkness.

//Cue in: “So when the…
Cue out: …is no paraffin.”//

Komakech says the problem is compounded by the lack of personnel at the unit. She says there are only two midwives yet about 180 expectant mothers turn up at the health centre every month.
Other problems at Bardege health center include lack of sync and running water to aid operations in the labour ward.

According to the medical personnel, the health unit has also only one delivery bed making most expectant mothers to deliver on the floor.

By 2pm on Thursday, Aywee Health Centre Three appeared deserted with neither the patients nor the personnel in place.

Kelvin Oroma, who lives in the neighbourhood told URN that the medical personnel at the unit only work when they are called on phone by the relatives of patients to respond to an emergency.

George Labeja, the Mayor of Gulu says his council has budgeted to install solar panels in all the four health centres during this financial year.

Labeja also says they are following up a presidential pledge where transformers were to be put at the health units.

He says they have written a reminder to President Yoweri Museveni to fulfill his pledge.

 

Comments