Mbarara regional referral Hospital has run out of X-ray films forcing the hospital to refer patients to private clinics. Our reporter found the X-ray room closed on Wednesday because there is no film to use.
Nicklaus Ngamba, a resident of Mbarara municipality who is attending to his father with brain damage says he has been turned away several times on grounds that the X-Ray machine is out of use because of lack of X-ray films.
Ngamba narrates that he had to pay 50.000 shillings to get X-Ray services at Goodwill Ultra sound scan in Mbarara town. Ngamba says on top of failing to access free X-Ray services he was made to pay 200.000 shillings for a CT scan before doctors prescribed medication for his weak father.
Marry Atukwatsa, a resident of Kikagate Isingiro district also faced similar circumstances. Atukwatsa says she was asked to pay 20,000 shillings for X-ray services at the private wing in Mbarara Regional Referral Hospital.
Dr. George Upenyntho, the Director Mbarara Regional Referral hospital has admitted the stock out of X-ray films saying their budget doesn’t allow them to purchase the films.
Upenytho says patients have to endure the current situation and pay for the CT scan and X-ray services since they are costly to maintain.
Ideally, Mbarara Regional Referral Hospital is meant to have two X-Ray machines. However, the one in the outpatient wing is grounded due to lack of films. Mbarara Regional Referral Hospital handles patients from over 20 districts in western Uganda.
They include Mbarara, Isingiro, Ibanda, Ntungamo, Sheema, Mitooma, Bushenyi, Kiruhura, Rubirizi, Buhweju, Kasese, Kabarole, Kamwenge, Bundibugyo, Ntoroko, Kyenjojo, Kabale, Rukungir, Kanungu, Kisoro, Kyengegwa and Lyantonde among others. It also works as a teaching hospital for medical doctors under Mbarara University of science and technology -MUST.