‘87 % of Kibaale residents don’t wash hands’

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Health officials in Kibaale District have revealed that 87 per cent of residents in the district don’t wash hands after using pit-latrines.

According to a health report which was presented last Friday during a public accountability forum organised by the Office of the Prime Minister and the Resident District Commissioner, many people are suffering from preventable diseases as a result of poor sanitation.

The report presented by the district health officer, Dr Dan Kyamanywa, revealed that only 13 per cent of the population have hand washing facilities near pit-latrines implying 87 per cent do not wash their hands after visiting toilets and pit-latrines.

According to the report, only 4 per cent of the population have rubbish pits while that 96 per cent dispose of rubbish and other waste in the open, which makes them vulnerable to diseases and other infections.

‘‘The problem is common in Bwamiramira and Kabasekende sub-counties,’’ Dr Kyamanywa noted.

During the same public forum, residents tasked district leaders and civil servants to explain as to why there are poor services in health, education and Operation Wealth Creation sectors.

Ms Juliet Kusiima, one of the participants, decried the frequent drug shortages and stock outs of essential medicines at the various health facilities. “When you go to a health centre with malaria or any other illness, they tell you that they don’t have drugs or even Panadol tablets,’’ Ms Kusiima noted.

When asked to give accountability of health sector funds, Dr Kyamanywa said the district has so far received Shs1.5 billion for the Financial Year 2016/2017, which has been used on salaries, allowances, medical logistics and other equipment.

Kibaale District has only one health centre IV which according to Dr Kyamanywa is failing to handle the big number of patients.
The district chairman, Mr Peter Amara, said there is a need for government to elevate Kibaale Health Centre IV to a general hospital.
The district has also spent eight years without an ambulance.
“People are being referred to Mubende, Kagadi and Kakumiro for services and they don’t get help there. Many women are dying in villages because of this problem, (no ambulance ),’’ Mr Amara said.
However, the minister for Finance, Mr Matia Kasaija, tasked all civil servants to start displaying how they are using public funds. ‘‘ I want you to put the schedule of how public funds are being used for people to see,” Mr Kasaija said.

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