The Intensive Care Unit at Mulago National Referral Hospital re-opened on Friday after several days of closure that resulted in the deaths of five people who would have probably been kept alive on the unit’s life support machines.
The closure of the intensive care was as a result of a shortage of bacterial filters.
The hospital spokesperson, Mr Enock Kusasira denied the closure of the facility. In his statement to press he claimed that Mulago experienced a temporary shortage of bacterial filters for two machines.
“The order for the filters was placed on September 20, 2012 and they were later on delivered on October 12 but were not well packaged,” he said. “We asked the supplier for another batch which was delivered on November 1, 2012.”
Mulago Hospital management claims they ran out of filters for only two machines, while sources at the hospital said all the four ventilators did not have filters, and as such no patient could be admitted to the ICU.
Most of the patients, who turned up at the hospital and could not afford private hospitals, were turned away. Mulago continues to operate with very old equipment in the ICU as well as in the other departments.