Kamwenge Health Centre Goes 6 Months Without Placenta Disposal Pit

3317 Views Kamwenge, Uganda

In short
For six months now, Kamwenge Health Centre III has been operating without a secured placenta disposal pit. Since the collapse of the placenta disposal pit however, the health centre dump the placenta in abandoned toilets.

For six months now, Kamwenge Health Centre III has operated without a secured placenta disposal pit.

A placenta disposal pit is where the placenta of mothers who have given birth are disposed of.  Placenta are supposed to be disposed of as safely as possible because the natural processes of decomposition begin quickly. The disposal is to minimise the risk of infection to the mothers and others.

But since the collapse of the placenta disposal pit, the health centre dump the placenta in abandoned toilets.

The former placenta disposal pit, which is 5 metres away from the maternity ward, stands unused. Emitting a choking smell that fills the air.

Ronah Orishaba, a routine client of the health centre and neighbour, attributes the collapse of the placenta pit to shoddy construction work.

Dinavenve Kyomugisha, a resident of Kayembe cell in Kamwege town council, tells our reporter that she worries for the health of expectant mothers who may contract diseases because of their ward's proximity to the pit.

The lack of a placenta disposal pit is not the centre's only challenge. Kyomugisha also complaines of filthy toilets at the health facility.

Mildred Mbonyi, the in-charge of the centre, when contacted for comment refused to talk to the press and referred them to the District Health Officer and Chief Administrative Officer.

The Kamwenge district Acting Health Officer Winfred Kambonesa Rurangaranga blames the poor sanitation at the government health centre on overqualified porters who regard their job as not befitting their level of education.

Rurangaranga argues that the management of the health centre have neglected their core responsibilites. He says that although the centre is supposed to submit a sanitation report to the district  health department, they do not do so.

Rurangaranga claims though that the district has got assurance from Baylor College of Medicine, a US funded organization, that plans are underway to set up six placenta pits at different health centres in the district.

During a 30th August council seating, Geoffrey Byamukama the Kamwenge town council LC3 chairperson had reported that the town council did not have the funds to adequately maintain the medical facility.

Kamwenge Health Centre III was established in 1988. It is situated a short distance from the Kamwenge district headquarters and serves residents of Kamwenge town council.

There is a proposal to elevate it to a health centre IV.