Uganda Red Cross Society with support from the Government of Uganda will today deploy 10 ambulances to support emergency response activities across 10 districts along major highways in Uganda. The selected highways are also considered hot spot areas that are prone to accidents and the ambulances will support emergency evacuations.
While commissioning and handing over the ambulances, the Prime Minister of Uganda Rt. Hon. Dr. Ruhakana Rugunda noted that the work done by the Uganda Red Cross as part of their mandate as stipulated in the Red Cross Act as an integral part of the deliverables by the office of the Prime Minister and the Ministry of Health.
“We trust the Uganda Red Cross and the proficiency they have exhibited over time. The Government of Uganda trusts that you will deliver on this mandate in close coordination with the Ministry of Health. Go and serve the nation.” Rugunda said.
Through the annual budget allocation to Government institutions and directorates, the Uganda Red Cross in the year 2019 /2020 received funding worth 8.35bn shillings through the Ministry of Health. Part of this funding was allocated towards construction of a Health Centre III in Bunambutye to support the families relocated from Bududa (on going), while the remaining funds were directed towards procurement of ambulances and relief nonfood item kits to respond to disaster affected families.
The Permanent Secretary Ministry of Health Dr. Diana Atwine highlighted the dream of having an ambulance fleet for every region with call centers. She further acknowledged that Red Cross is a trust worthy partner in managing the ambulances.
“The Government of Uganda works with partners to reach the people of Uganda everywhere they are. The Red Cross is one of the partners and globally we have seen Red Cross in other countries managing emergency Health Services. We trust that they will manage these ambulances well” Atwine said.
Robert Kwesiga the General secretary Uganda Red Cross thanked the Government of Uganda for trusting Red Cross with the mandate to manage this very important landmark in the country since the plan to procure the ambulances has been on the drawing board for a long time.
“The communities need these ambulances to help in the quick evacuation of the accident victims and other emergency cases than before. We therefore say thank you to the Government of Uganda for your support and we pledge to continue serving Ugandans as per our mandate” Kwesiga added.
Uganda Red Cross will deploy 10 ambulances, with committed staff and trained response and rescue teams to support the ambulance operations at the 10 districts where these will be stationed.
The ambulances will be stationed at the following highways (districts): Kampala (2 at URCS HQTRs, Jinja (1), Mbale (1), Masaka (1) Lira, (1), Gulu, (1), Mbarara (1), Kabarole (1), and Hoima (1).