ARUA. Resident district Commissioner of Arua, Mr Nahori Oya has called upon management of Arua Regional Referral Hospital (ARRH) to immediately pay pending allowances of frontline doctors and nurses who have been treating Covid-19 patients.
ARRH started Coronavirus case management on 24th of April and the allowances is said to have accumulated for over one month now.
The RDC was speaking during the discharge of seven recovered Coronavirus patients at ARRH on Thursday.
“I want to appeal to you director, what is due for these health workers, please let us give it to them. Our doctors and nurses have really made us proud and I encourage them to continue with their resilience as the whole world is also looking to Uganda. This is because of their dedication amidst hard conditions”, Oya stressed.
The RDC elaborated that none payment of health workers should not arise because the government of Uganda already gave money to both Arua regional referral hospital and district task force.
He said one of the seven guidelines of using the money is to motivate health workers at the forefront of Covid-19 case management.
“We don’t want to get embarrassment that some staff want to go on strike which will bring problems to us for nothing because as a government, we have done our part “The RDC reiterated, adding that the government will continue to look for resources in a bid to motivate health workers who have risked their lives to manage Coronavirus cases.
In response to the non-payment, Arua hospital director, Dr Filbert Nyeko confirmed that the hospital paid the initial first group of doctors and nurses in the first 14 days of Coronavirus case management in the hospital.
He said management of the hospital has faced challenges in the payment process because some of the workers like the cleaners have not had bank accounts and their payments cannot be made in cash because of the payment guideline.
“We are preparing to pay again. You can’t pay in anticipation. You pay when work is done” he said.
The government of Uganda paid Shs 165 million to the district taskforce and Shs 270 million to the hospital for coronavirus case management.
High risk workers who directly handle the coronavirus patients are paid Shs 80,000 per day, those working at the vicinity where the patients are admitted are paid Shs 60,000 and those who don’t get into direct management of the cases get Shs 50,000n per day.
“This has nothing to do with thinking that we have eaten the money. If I ate the money, those patients would not be eating and this is a very small amount of money and when a fraction of it is taken, it will be seen” the director noted.
Upon release of the seven patients, RDC Oya called upon members of the community to desist from stigmatizing discharged coronavirus victims in order to make them feel part of the community for normal living.