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Covid19 testing: Uganda spends UGX 51.8bn on truck drivers

a health worker at a boarder point

Kampala, Uganda |  THE INDEPENDENT |  Uganda has so far spent Shillings 51.8billion on testing truck drivers for COVID-19 at different points entry, according to Ministry of Health.

Information from the Health Ministry shows that over 216,000 tests have been carried out on truck drivers at various boarder points including Mutukula, Adjumani and Elegu among others.

144,000 of these are foreign truck drivers while 72,000 are Ugandans.

Dr. Henry Mwebesa, the Director General of Health Services says they have spent 75% of the costs on testing foreign truckers, which he says isn’t sustainable.

The Health Ministry Spokesperson, Emma Ainebyoona, says each test costs USD 65 (about Shilling 241,000).

However, the Dr. Mwebesa says test kits are scarce on the world market, adding some of the kits the ministry ordered in April are yet to be delivered.

Dr. Mwebesa has requested the East African Community to help pursue the strategy of ensuring pre-testing truck drivers before they enter Uganda.

The Health Minister, Dr. Jane Ruth Aceng, says the only solution is to continue testing until the situation comes back to normal despite the existing challenges.

“We are already in the third stage of the pandemic,” she said.

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