By Prossy Namiiro
Uganda Medical Association (UMA) has praised the government’s commitment on salary enhancement for all health workers, asking it to provide a fair and logical salary structure for all cadres for better service delivery.
The government recently allocated shs 495 billion for salary enhancement for all health workers and provided funds to ensure that 400 health workers are recruited to cover part of the human resource gap in government health facilities, upgrading some health facilities and buying medical equipment.
Speaking to journalists on Friday, Dr. Samuel Oledo, the President of UMA, said this is a good gesture towards improving doctors’ welfare in the country.
“We appreciate the ministry of health for directing local governments to ensure that all positions for district medical officer, principal medical officer and city medical officers are filled to improve health services delivery in a letter dated 31st may 2022 ref. No. 93/99/01, for the purpose of improving management and supervision of health service delivery in local government and district hospitals, “he said.
Oledo, however, asked the government to provide more funds so that more health workers including the Covid-19 health workers who were on contracts are recruited as per the Presidential directive so that the human resource gap in public health facilities of 60% is fully covered in all public health facilities.
“Increase the budget for health facilities more so the high volume health facilities to ensure that enough drugs and other medical supplies are provided in public health facilities to improve service delivery. To continue working on other Presidential directives which are met for improvement of the welfare of doctors so that they can be implemented, “he stated.
Oledo said the human resource gap in public health facilities is huge and the 400 slots alone cannot solve the mess that is caused by the 60% human resource gap in public health facilities to ensure quality service delivery.
“The budget allocation for district, regional and national referral hospitals for drugs, reagents and other medical supplies is still low, the budget needs to be increased to solve the problem of incomplete service delivery more so in the high volume public health facilities, “he said.
He requested the government to complete and provide a salary structure that is fair for all cadres in the medical field, adding that they noticed several discrepancies in the draft which was circulating on social media which indicated minimal and unrealistic increments for some cadres which would lead to demoralization and affect teamwork.
For example, he said the salary increment for the specialists [medical officer special grade] is unrealistic and lower cadre health workers with diplomas and certificates, requesting if necessary, to guide the Ministry of Public Service through the Ministry of Health to ensure that there is a balanced salary structure.