Some of the premature babies who had been admitted in the neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) at Kawempe national referral hospital have been transferred to the Mulago specialized maternal and neonatal hospital.
In a statement issued on Thursday, ministry of Health said they "acknowledge the overwhelming patient numbers" at Kawempe hospital. The statement comes after social media got awash with photographs showing newly-born babies sleeping on plastic chairs and some sharing a single bed.
According to the ministry, Kawempe hospital delivers an average of 80-100 babies daily and 2,500 babies monthly translating to approximately 30,000 babies per year. To address the congestion, the ministry says it is working towards expansion of the neonatal special care unit at Kawempe hospital, procuring additional equipment such as incubators among others.
Further, the ministry said it is working with Kampala Capital City Authority (KCCA) and the neighbouring Local Governments to ensure that the health facilities are functionalized to full capacity to curb the high referral numbers
Dr Lawrence Kazibwe the director of Kawempe hospital says that they have the capacity of admitting about 60 babies but the number of deliveries at the hospital is high at about 100 per day. This is not the first time conditions at Kawempe hospital have been put in the limelight. Three months ago, babies at the unit died due to a power outage.