Nyagatare residents demand improved healthcare services

Residents of Nyagatare have decried shortage of medical personnel and facilities in the district referral hospital.

Residents of Nyagatare have decried shortage of medical personnel and facilities in the district referral hospital.

Some residents who talked to Saturday Times yesterday, said they travel long distances to reach the hospital that is ever congested with patients.

Aloys Kanamugire, from Rwempasha, said medical service delivery is slow, adding that sometimes expectant mothers queue for hours before being attended to.

“One of the areas that is in dire need of reinforcement is the maternity ward. It is alarming to see mothers queuing for hours waiting for antenatal care,” he said.

Jane Mukayiranga, a mother of three, said the hospital is too small to meet the health demands of the population.

“How many nurses or doctors do we have vis-a-vis the number of patients? They are too few to handle the growing number of patients. The government should act on this,” she said.

Nyagatare vice mayor for social affairs Charlotte Musabyimana confirmed the residents’ complaints, saying the health services people get are insufficient.

“Being the only referral facility in the district, it is quite clear that the number of medical staff on the ground is stressed to the limit by the number of patients who visit this hospital every day,” Musabyimana said.

“The available doctors and nurses are not enough to serve a scattered population of more than 45,000 people. This is the biggest district in the country with a very high population.”

She, however, said the district was in consultation with Ministry of Health to expand the hospital.

“The maternity ward is under construction. The ministry is also expected to increase staff and possibly another hospital. The population is ever increasing, which is why we need to expand the hospital,” she said.

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