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Mbarara Covid-19 isolation unit turned into Infectious diseases and research centre

Mbarara hospital.

Mbarara, Uganda | THE INDEPENDENT | The Covid-19 isolation centre at Mbarara Regional Referral Hospital is to be renamed the Infectious Diseases and Research Centre.

The construction of the isolation centre that started during the COVID-19 outbreak in 2020 cost up to two billion Shillings. The centre which is now awaiting commissioning was constructed with the support of 243 million Shillings from Mbarara University of Science and Technology, 1.4 billion Shillings from Global Collaborative-a US organisation and 800 million from the Government of Uganda.

Previously, the hospital operated its isolation centre in a tarpaulin but has since shifted to the newly constructed centre. The Director of Mbarara Regional Referral Hospital, Dr Celestine Barigye says they decided to shift to the centre early because the previous isolation centre was not conducive, and also small to accommodate the number of patients from the region.

Barigye says the new 44-bed capacity isolation centre is spacious enough and has 24 staff that include doctors and nurses trained to handle infectious diseases.

Dr Barigye says they have plans to rename the centre, Infectious Diseases and Research Centre following the observation that it has all the needed requirements befitting the status, noting that it has been installed with a very big oxygen plant which is 110 cubic meters with its generator. He adds that the entire isolation centre has piped oxygen.

Halson Kagure, the Hospital Public Relations Officer says that during the Ebola outbreak last year, 10 suspected cases were admitted but fortunately, results returned negative.

Infectious Diseases are easily transmissible from person to person that cause a life-threatening illness with no or few treatment options and pose a threat to both personnel and the public. Medics reccomend that suspected infectious diseases cases should be managed in specialized facilities with critical care to minimize infection risks.

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