Uganda: MoH Launches Electronic System to Curb Shortages in the Health Sector


Ministry of Health launched a Human Resource for health Information System a digitalised information system for managing human resource in the Ministry. The purpose of the system is to improve for better planning purposes and to easily identify vacancies and fill them.

"Managers who will access this information will be able to report any vacancies to the Ministry so that they are filled on time," Vincent Oketcho Chief of Party, Uganda Capacity at IntraHealth said.

He said previously there were difficulties in obtaining reliable data and this made it difficult to plan accordingly for health services because details were stored manually and sometime s the papers would be misplaced but this is bound to change with the electronic system.

Oketcho says the information will only be restricted to managers and administrators of the hospitals for security purposes because information can easily be altered.

During the launch at Hotel African in Kampala on Feb 7, John Mark Winfield the USAID Deputy Director says maternal health activists have pointed to the absence of trained personnel as the reason for the majority deaths in the labour wards but Winfield hopes if this gap is filled then we shall see the number if those dying going down.

Richard Nduhura the State Minister for Health says the system which was introduced in 2006 will see to the equitable distributions of health workers through out the country. He says well as 80 percent of the population is concentrated in the rural areas, only 20 percent of the health workers are distributed in the rural areas and the remaining 80 percent of the health work force in concentrated in towns with a population of 20 percent.

He says says the shortages have been translated to work loads where the only available health workers have to cater to the over load of patients which in the end results to poor health service care in the end.

Nduhura says the system will see to effect that absenteeism, ghost workers some of the challenges widespread in the health work force are reduced. "There will be consistent monitoring which will help us to quickly identify the gaps and quickly fill them immediately," he said.

He says the government with the support of the World Health organisation and the World Bank will extend the system to 40 other districts. So far 69 districts have been installed on the system and by 2014; the Ministry hopes the system will be installed in all the districts in the country.

The system will also be adopted by the Public service and all government agencies to recruit and transfer staff.