President commends medical practitioners

Tuesday 20th November 2018
PPU
 
President Yoweri Museveni has highly commended medical doctors for their commitment to work and resolution to prevent diseases.
“I am happy to be in the midst of former disease promoters who have pledged to become disease preventers. Most of the diseases can be prevented. I wonder why it has taken this long for the preventive stand to be implemented. I am happy to note that you are officially converted,” he said; adding that if the preventive measures are taken, Uganda would save about Shs.2 trillion per annum in the cost of medical drugs. 
The President was addressing the 3rd Grande Medical Doctors’ Dinner, which marked the conclusion of their 2-day Conference at Imperial Royale Hotel in Kampala. Its deliberations ran under the theme of ‘Transforming Service Delivery for Universal Health Coverage.’ The conference attracted delegations from Kenya, Somalia and Zambia. 
During the occasion the Minister of Health, Dr. Aceng Jane, handed over to President Museveni an international family planning award that Uganda won recently in Kigali, Rwanda. 
At the dinner, the Uganda Medical Association (UMA) lifetime awards were presented  to Dr. Nathan Kenya Mugisha, Dr. Alex Odonga and Dr. Pier Rozanigo.
Dr. Achileo Bahizi and Prof. Francis Omaswa scooped the Dr. Margaret Mungherera award while the young Doctor’s award went to Dr. Emma Amadrio. 
Presidential awards went to Health Minister, Hon. Dr. Jane Ruth Aceng, State Minister for Planning, Hon. David Bahati, Health Permanent Secretary, Dr. Diana Atwine and Dr. Michael Bukenya. Others were Dr. Amos Lyomoki, Dr. Jack Turyahikayo and Dr. Anna Sekajja.
President Museveni said the NRM Government has made big strides in the health sector through immunization against 13 diseases. He noted that hygiene and nutrition are some of the major channels for prevention of diseases. He, therefore, asked District Health Officers to spend time educating people in matters of malnutrition and stunted growth. He also added that a lot can be achieved in the prevention of the HIV/AIDS scourge. He was happy to note that the Government has distributed 21 million mosquito nets throughout the country saying that the move has led to a drastic decline in malaria infections.
He advised the Ministry of Health and that of Local Government to work closely in directing wananchi to use the ventilation improved pit latrines that have capacity to eliminate green flies. He passionately appealed to the people of Uganda to appreciate the benefits of effective eradication of life style diseases such as heart diseases and alcoholism.
President Museveni told medical practitioners that the challenge before them is to make their country recover. He said in 1986 the NRM Government launched a minimum recovery programme that was designed to solve the small island of modernity in the country. He noted that the economy previously depended on the 3Cs and 3Ts, namely coffee, cotton and copper as well as tea, tobacco and tourism. He revealed that the NRM strategy was to ensure economic recovery followed by progress. 
Mr. Museveni also stressed the need for a stable and economically progressive country. He reminded medical doctors in particular and all other professionals in Uganda that the private sector cannot grow without security and infrastructure. He said that it is not correct for employees to crave for high salaries when there is no money.
He informed the medical doctors that the Movement Government has since 2006 injected more money building roads and generation of electricity. He expressed happiness that today Uganda exports more than she imports from neighbouring Kenya. He also informed them that Uganda currently exports more to the East African region than she imports from member countries. He attributed this positive development to the policy of infrastructure development. He was optimistic that with the availability of electricity, Uganda’s national economy is assured of posting a faster growth rate.
While advocating for scientists in the country to get salaries on the global level, President Museveni also said it was also time to plan for a full-scale medical care programme. 
Health Minister, Hon. Jane Ruth Aceng saluted President Museveni for valuing the work of medical doctors in Uganda. She disclosed that Uganda has imported Ebola vaccines, courtesy of the World Health Organization, to be soon administered on wananchi after an outbreak in neighbouring Democratic Republic of Congo. She urged the medical personnel and all other stakeholders to remain alert.
State Minister for Planning, Hon. David Bahati, reiterated the Government commitment to supporting science and scientists.
The Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Health, Dr. Diana Atwine, disclosed that most of the demands in the medical field have been fulfilled adding that all regional referral hospitals would be fully equipped.
Dr. Ekwaro Obuku, who is President of Uganda Medical Association (UMA), commended President Museveni for his personal response to medical matters. He gave assurances that the medical personnel are patriotic, committed and loyal to Uganda. He added that they have resolved to provide quality health care and eradication of absenteeism.
The Executive Director of Mulago Hospital, Dr. Byarugaba Baterana, saluted President Museveni for training medical doctors abroad. He assured him that the National Referral Hospital has got all that is needed and as such there is no more need for patients to be referred abroad for medical attention. He revealed that their intention is to have specialised training in all government hospitals throughout the country
 

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