BY RICHARD DRASIMAKU
ARUA CITY: Thursday, July 29, 2021
The construction of a state-of-the-art outpatients department and casualty ward for Arua referral hospital has reached 70 percent despite the one year pause caused by the Covid-19 pandemic.
It is one of the three projects under the sh92.4b grant provided by the Japanese government through the Japan International Cooperation Agency to improve infrastructure and equipment at Arua, Gulu and Lira regional referral hospitals.
The works at Arua hospital began in October 2019 and were to wrap up in October 2020.
However, the project stalled in April last year when the Japanese expatriate staff were forced back to their country as the coronavirus contagion challenged the world.
The construction was restarted in April this year and the project site engineer, Leonard Adomati, said they are sure to finish and handover the facility on December 20, 2021.
“What we are doing now are the finishes, the roofing is almost complete and the equipment are ready for installation,” he conferred.
The complex would have two x-ray rooms plus one control room, a laboratory, a pharmacy, minor theatre, HIV/AIDS screening unit for most-at-risk populations, specialized clinics, treatment rooms, dental clinic and dental x-ray and an intensive care unit room.
“The Japanese have brought sophisticated and diverse equipment that we did not have before. This facility is primed to offer automated service that will reduce on paper work and increase access to quality health service,” explained Yonas Oboth, the senior hospital administrator.
He added: “For instance when a patient comes in with a broken leg, his image will be projected from the receiving room to the doctor on a screen so that he can decide whether to transfer him to the theatre or not without coming into physical contact with the patient.”
He said this innovation will create more space for patients and hospital staff to maneuver and serve the population.
Oboth thanked the government of Japan for the generosity and appreciated the professionalism of the Japanese expatriates that he said is producing a job well done.
Implemented under the “improvement of regional referral hospitals in northern Uganda programme,” the project which was contracted to Iwata Chizakithat that in-turn subcontracted the Excel Construction Company, is supervised by Yokogawa Architects and engineers on behalf of the government.