Masaka, Uganda | URN | COVID-19 patients admitted at Masaka Regional Referral Hospital have rose up in protest against the poor living conditions in the isolation unit.
On Wednesday 1, June 2020 morning, the male patients caused a stampede in the mental ward which is currently serving as an isolation and treatment center for coronavirus patients.
The patients banged doors and windows as well as shouting on top of their voices demanding to be discharged from what they describe as incarceration disguised as treatment.
The patients also recorded videos in which they accused the hospital management of failure to care for them, placing them together with new patients and feeding them poorly.
The patients also complained of neglect by health workers.
The protest comes two days after a COVID-19 female patient at the same isolation center recorded a video describing the appalling condition in the ward.
The patient complained of poor hygiene in ward, lavatories and inadequate meals.
She also complained about the absence of reliable health workers to attend to them.
The Health Ministry spokesperson Emmanuel Ainebyona accused the patient of making the video with gross exaggerations, saying the patient had proven troublesome ever since she was admitted in the ward.
He explained that the unit was filled to capacity and the hospital management had improvised a temporary structure to cater for female patients so as to avert the possible challenges that may occur when they mix patients of different genders.
Herman Ssentongo, the Masaka Resident District Commissioner who also chairs the district COVID-19 taskforce says they are investigating ulterior motives in the actions of the patients.
He explained that the hospital management and medical teams are sacrificing a lot to provide the required support towards the recovery of the patients.