Police hunt medic who administered patients with fake anti-rabies vaccines

Police hunt medic who administered patients with fake anti-rabies vaccines

Jinja, Uganda | URN | Police in Uganda is hunting for Fred Kangawo, a clinical officer attached to Kakaire Health Center III in Kiira region, over vaccinating dog bite victims with fake anti-rabies vaccines.

It is reported that 20 children suffered from dog bite injuries on Tuesday 23, November 2021 evening, and they sought anti-rabies vaccines from Buwenge Health Center IV on Wednesday 24th.

The victims’ parents say that the health workers were not readily available at the facility, but they interfaced with Kangawo, who offered to vaccinate them at a cost of 25,000 Shillings per victim, which they agreed to pay.

Abdullah Nabbanjji, whose four-year-old daughter suffered from dog bite injuries, says that he first rushed her to Buwenge General Hospital but the vaccines were not available, and was referred to Buwenge Health Center IV instead.

Nabbanjji stresses that the facility had no standby health workers on duty, save for Kangawo who offered to vaccinate them, but he was shocked by the revelation from the administrators of the health facility, informing him that his child received fake anti-rabies vaccine dosage instead.

However, the health facility’s officer in charge, Wilson Mwanja told journalists on Thursday 25th that there was no requisition of anti-rabies vaccines from their stores on Wednesday 24th.

Mwanja argued that anti-rabies vaccines are stored in cold chain system and it was impossible for anyone to easily purchase them from pharmacies, which raises suspicion that the victims might have received fake vaccines.

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“Anti-rabies vaccines are stored in our cold room system, but since there was no requisition made for the same on both Tuesday and Wednesday, we have to conduct diagnostic studies aimed at ascertaining what exactly was used to vaccinate the victims,” he says.

Mwanja further vowed to investigate the manner in which a non-staff member would infiltrate the facility’s health system and attend to patients, yet the attendance schedule reflects the presence of 27 health workers on that particular day.

Jinja Resident District Commissioner, Elijah Madoi says that he has directed police officers to investigate the matter and arrest Kangawo, alongside all his accomplices, suspected of involving themselves in syndicate rackets to frustrate efficient health service delivery to the grassroots populations.

Meanwhile, Kiira police spokesperson, James Mubi says that they have opened up a general enquiry file and the suspect will face three counts of impersonation, fraud, and forgery.