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Experts task gov’t to equip ENT departments in regional hospitals

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Kampala, Uganda | THE INDEPENDENT | Ear, Nose, and Throat surgeons at Mulago Hospital have decried the high number of people in need of surgery who are referred to the hospital.

Dr. Abubaker Bugembe an Ear, Nose, and throat surgeon at Mulago revealed that for the past three years, the ENT department has been receiving many referrals from all over the country which puts a strain on the surgeons. He also complained about working long hours and being overwhelmed by the number of patients.

Bugembe was speaking on Wednesday at the sidelines of a camp for children seeking Adenotonsillar surgery.  128 children were operated on during the one-week camp.

According to Bugembe 650 cases were referred to the department from different parts of the country but they are yet to be worked on. He also said that on normal days the Ear, Nose, and Throat department has been operating 5 children in a week.

Dr. Fred Bisso the Senior ENT consultant at Mulago Hospital urged the government to actively work towards training and equipping more ENT specialists to ensure that patients don’t have to travel to distant facilities like Mulago to access quality healthcare.

He added that in desperate situations, individuals have turned to self-medication or unqualified sources for help.

According to the ENT Society in Uganda, for a population of 42 million, there are only 49 ENT medical specialists.

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