The Ministry of Health has announced it will start charging money from Ugandans who wish to get tested for Covid19 at the various testing points.
Following a worrying spike in the number of Covid 19 cases and with more Ugandan both at individual and organizational level seeking to get tested, the Ministry says it has found itself running out of resources to continue offering free testing services.
As such, stating next week on September 1st Ministry of Health will start charging $65 which is about Shs 240,500 from everyone seeking voluntary testing for Covid19.
In a communique to various government agencies, on behalf of the Ministry Permanent Secretary Diana Atwiine; Geoffrey Seremba revealed that this decision was informed by the recent sharp increase in the cases due to community spread of the virus.
“The Ministry continues to receive requests from Organizations to have their staff tested, which it finds difficult to sustain due to inadequate in-country stock of test kits, resource constraints and the high cost of COVID- I 9 testing,” Seremba said.
The $65 charge being introduced, Seremba said is “a cost recovery mechanism that will enable the Ministry of Health to acquire more test kits for continued access to testing services in the country.”
The money he said can be paid in Stanbic Bank Uganda on account number 9030017657983.
The categories of people who will pay for the testing services include truck drivers at the different Points of Entry; Individuals seeking to know their COVID 19 status; Organizations (both Government and Private) that wish to test their staff for purposes of prevention; Ugandans returning from abroad. As well as visitors arriving into the country from other countries.
Seremba however, reassured that government will continue to offer free testing services to patients who present to health facilities with COVID-19 symptoms; contacts of people who have tested positive for COVID19; community surveys to establish the extent of spread of the virus, surveillance samples as well as front line Health workers.