Makerere University College of Health Sciences and Mulago National Referral Hospital hold Landmark Meeting to Strengthen Relations

Makerere University College of Health Sciences and Mulago National Referral Hospital hold Landmark Meeting to Strengthen Relations

Makerere University College of Health Sciences and Mulago National Referral Hospital have held a meeting to chat out strategies to minimize disruption to work during the period the hospital will be under renovation. The meeting was held on November 4th 2014 at the College of Health Sciences Boardroom.

The Mulago Hospital team was led by the Director, Dr. BB Byarugaba and the MakCHS team was led by the Principal, Professor Nelson Sewankambo.

Issues of mutual interest were discussed including how to work together to improve the quality of training by the two institutions, conducting research that leads to improved patient care, extending training facilities to satellite hospitals around Kampala, among other issues.

The Director Mulago National Referral Hospital was formally informed that the College community has been hearing unconfirmed reports of hospital management's intention to cause the College to vacate the space it is currently occupying alongside the hospital. The Hospital Director apologized for any existing misunderstandings and said that there are no plans to cause the vacation of the College from Mulago hill. He said the two institutions need each other to do their jobs well and serve the population.

ÔÇ£Renovations at the hospital are taking care of Makerere UniversityÔÇÖs needs, including training. The WomenÔÇÖs hospital and other hospitals being renovated are being equipped with modern training equipment. The existing Memorandum of Understanding will be reviewed to take care of our evolving needsÔÇØ.

He called for patience while the renovations are going on, saying there will be some inconvenience due to being squeezed in small places. He added that Mulago cannot survive without the University.

These are words many at the meeting described as music to their ears. ÔÇ£This is music to my ears. I have been sleeping 4-5 hours, but today I am going to sleep for more hoursÔÇØ, said Prof. Sewankambo.

What we have been hearing is that Makerere University is being disregarded by Mulago Hospital, but what the Director is saying is indeed music to everybodyÔÇÖs earsÔÇØ, said Dean, School of Public Health, Dr. William Bazeyo.

ÔÇ£It is important that before the meeting ends, there is a resolution on how to fast-track the Memorandum of Understanding. It is paramount and I hope this is the beginning of good relations between the two institutionsÔÇØ, said Dr. Charles Ibingira, Dean School of Biomedical Sciences.

The meeting was taken through two presentations detailing the renovations plans for Mulago Hospital (Phase 1). They are indeed grand and exciting plans!

Dr. Henry Mwebesa of the Ministry of Health said that under the renovation some equipment has already been procured. He said the womenÔÇÖs hospital will cost about US Dollars 34M. The construction of the six-storey 320-bed hospital complex will run April 2013 ÔÇô December 2016.

After the renovation the Obstetrics and Gynaecology Department will be upgraded to a Directorate and will be moved to the WomenÔÇÖs Hospital, while the Intensive Care Unit will have an extra 18 beds. For easier coordination of the administration function, all administrative units will be moved to 6th Floor.

There are several lecture theatres planned, fully wired and networked with modern teaching equipment facilitate strengthening of telemedicine.
The mortuary will also get one more floor with modern equipment installed.

It was agreed that another meeting be convened (preferably in 2 weeks' time) to present the Master Plan for Mulago Hospital Complex.

In the near future, the two teams agreed to hold quarterly meetings to facilitate joint planning and free flow of communication/information
It was also agreed that the process of developing a comprehensive MoU between the two institutions will commence soon with leadership from MoH led by Dr. Henry Mwebesa

The meeting was attended by MakCHS staff, including Deans and Department Chairs, Mulago Hospital staff, Joadah Consult staff (Consulting Engineers) and ROKO Construction.