Kampala, Uganda | THE INDEPENDENT | The Embassy of Japan in Uganda has commissioned three medical machines for supporting the child and maternal health programs at St Mary’s Hospital Lacor in Gulu city.
They include two anesthesia machines and one ultrasound machine valued at 368 Million Shillings.
The ceremony held at Lacor hospital on Wednesday was graced by Kitamura Yoshinori, the Head of Economic Cooperation, Embassy of Japan, His Grace John Baptist Odama, the Archbishop of Gulu and Cyprian Opira, the director St Mary’s Hospital Lacor among other people.
During the commissioning, Kitamura said that this is part of the Assistance for Grassroots Human Security Project grant, a scheme administered by the Embassy of Japan to support community development projects to uplift the life of people at grassroots.
He added that the Japanese government injected 368 million shillings approximately (USD 99,500) for the procurement and installation of the medical equipment to facilitate surgical medical procedures and ultrasound scans.
Meanwhile, Cyprian Opira, the hospital director says that the machines will ensure faster and accurate services that have stagnated or been suspended due to lack of the machines.
He added that the machines will speed up operation procedures at the hospital because they can be used for both adults and children adding that the hospital has all the required experts to operate them.
The machines can monitor and detect stomach complications in children and offer effective cesarean deliveries for mothers as well as detecting abdominal injuries.
Lacor hospital conducts about 5,000 serious operations and 30,000 ultrasound services annually, demands that Opira says are overwhelming.
Johnson Oketayot, the Lacor hospital project officer said that the hospital requested for the assistance after its only anesthesia machines and ultrasounds broke down several months ago and could no longer be repaired.
The hospital board chairperson, His Grace John Baptist Odama applauded the Japanese government for supporting lives at the hospital and helping humanity.
Brenda Aromorach, a mother of one in Gulu city believes that the machines will bring affordable maternal health services closer to the people instead of private clinics that charge exorbitant fees.
Lacor is a Catholic founded hospital serving over 210,000 people annually from the entire Northern Uganda, Lango sub region and parts of South Sudan.
The United Nations Children`s Emergency Fund (UNICEF) reports that Uganda’s maternal mortality rate has consistently been one of the highest in the world with over 440 deaths per 100,000 live births.
The infant mortality rate in Uganda was about 33.4 deaths per 1,000 live births according to a 2019 report from the World Health Organization (WHO).
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