Malaria Epidemic: Health Workers Recalled From Leave

1838 Views Lamwo, Uganda

In short
Dr. Charles Oyoo Akiya, the Lamwo district Health Officer DHO says the health workers on duty were fast getting exhausted and overwhelmed by the number of patients seeking treatment in the 23 health care facilities in the district.

Lamwo District Health Officer has recalled all health workers from annual leave to handle the growing emergency situations of Malaria.

The district is battling to contain an upsurge of Malaria prevalence that the district health officer says has reached an epidemic level.

Dr. Charles Oyoo Akiya, the Lamwo district Health Officer (DHO) says the health workers on duty were fast getting exhausted and overwhelmed by the number of patients seeking treatment in the 23 health care facilities in the district.

Dr. Oyoo Akiya says the dire situation has also forced them to defer the annual leave of other health workers that had already been approved to a later date.

Lokung and Palabek Gem sub counties are presenting 90 percent prevalence of Malaria, the highest recorded since the upsurge began in May.
Dr. Akiya says the two sub counties received the least coverage of Indoor Residual Spray (IRS) of mosquitoes because most families refused that their homestead be sprayed.

Morris Omoko, the In-charge of Madi Opei Health Center IV Laboratory, the biggest hub of medical laboratory in the area, says the facility has had to borrow Malaria testing kits from Padibe Health Center IV since it has run out of testing kits.

Dr. Charles Oyoo Akiya says abuse of insecticide treated mosquito nets is among the leading challenges faced in the fight against Malaria. 

"Some people use the mosquito nets to tie their animals. They cut the nets into smaller pieces and make them into touts that they use to tether their livestock. Young chicks devoured by predator eagles are concealed under the protective cover of long lasting insecticide treated bed nets to prevent them being snatched by the sky dive hunting bird," says Akiya.

Henry Magala, the Chairperson of Program Oversight Committee coordinating mechanism says the districts are in the affected region trying their best to contain the situation.
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Dr. Myers Lugemwa, the head of National Malaria Control Program at the Ministry of Healthy says the districts should invoke the public health act and punish those frustrating the efforts of the districts to contain the disease by refusing to embrace intervention measures such as use of long lasting insecticide treated mosquito nets.

 

About the author

Peter Labeja
Peter Labeja has been a practicing journalist for the last 13 years during which he has covered part of the brutal conflict which bedeviled Northern Uganda as well as the painful transition to Peace thereafter. Emerging post conflict issues such as land rights of under privileged widows and orphans, challenges of access to social services in the immediate aftermath of Lord’s Resistance Army conflict in Northern Uganda.

Labeja is now the Northern Uganda Bureau chief in Acholi Sub Region since 2014 - Gulu, Amuru, Nwoya and Omoro districts as well as South Sudan falls within his areas of jurisdiction. He previously worked with The Vision Group for four years.

Labeja’s major career interests are in Climate Change; Agriculture and Environment - natural resources such as Water, Oil and Gas; Transitional Justice; Human Rights, Democracy and Governance as well as South Sudan’s humanitarian crisis. In 2013, Labeja was awarded a prestigious Pan African Journalism Award for excellence in journalism at United Nation’s UNEP headquarters in Nairobi, Kenya for Climate Change and Health Reporting.