About 39 districts do not have any hospitals at all, Parliament has heard.
There are about 127 districts across the country.
According to Jane Aceng, the minister of health, Jane Aceng, the population of most of these districts does not meet the recommended catchment population for a general hospital except lsingiro, Amuria and Serere.
Dr Aceng made the revelation while presenting a statement on the state of health service delivery in Uganda.
“By 1997, only 47 per cent of the population who needed Health Care could access outpatient services and by 2016, 86 per cent of the population were within 5km of a health facility. The Uganda Master Facility List shows that we have a total of 5,937 health facilities in the country of which 45 per cent are public or government, 15 per cent are Private-Not-For Profit and 40 per cent are Private for Profit sector,” she said.
The districts are Alebtong, Amuria, Amuru, Bukedea, Bukomansimbi, Bulambuli, Buvuma, Buyende, Dokolo, Gomba, lsingiro, Kalangala, Kaliro, Kamwenge, Kibuku, Koboko, Kole, Kotido, Kween, Kyankwanzi, Kyegegwa, Luuka, Lamwo, Lwengo, Manafwa, Mitoma, Nakapiripirit, Namutumba, Namayingo, Ntoroko, Otuke, Pader, Rubirizi, Serere, Sironko, Kibale, Kakumiro, Rubanda and Omoro.
According to the minister, there are districts that deserve special attention because of their geographical location and that when resources are availablem Ministry of Health will prioritize these districts first.
“These are lsland and mountainous districts like Buvuma, Kalangala, Namayingo, Mayuge and Namisindwa. The estimated startup cost per hospital for construction, human resources, medicines and medical equipment is Shs31.3 billion,” she said.
The revelation follows a damning report on the performance of healthcare by the World Health Organisation, ranking Uganda 186th out of 191 nations.
Dr Aceng however noted improvement in the stock of qualified health professions available for employment which has increased from 90,412 in 2017 to 101,350 in June 2018.
“183 students have been funded to pursue different courses in cancer related disciplines including 14 specialist oncology fellowships and 10 PhDs. The Uganda Cancer institute has established training programmes to train specialists locally including in Paediatric Oncology, Medical Oncology, Gynecologic Oncology, Hematology and Oncology Nursing,” she added.
Also the construction of the Regional Specialized Paediatric Surgical hospital was commissioned in February 2017 in Entebbe and will be completed by 2020.
“The hospital will provide services to the nation and the region. A GoU provision of Shs19 billion has been made so far and Shs5billion included in the budget for FY 2019/20 leaving a funding gap of Shs21 billion,” she added.
The chairperson of the Health Committee, Michael Bukenya said data from the Indian High Commission indicates that between 2015-2016, 3,200 Ugandans sought medical Visas to India and that 5,000 Ugandans go to India for treatment outside the medical board.
“Each Ugandan going to India goes with at least $25000 to $30000, excluding transport and the person accompanying them, this is about Shs200bn per year for India alone without considering those who go to Kenya and South Africa,” Bukenya said.