Home Health Section Nurses with degrees stuck as health system can’t absorb them

Nurses with degrees stuck as health system can’t absorb them

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There were only about 20 legislators out of the 459 MPs as Parliament debated the Data Protection and Privacy Bill on Tuesday. Out of the 20 MPs who attended the plenary session to debate the Bill, there were only two Opposition MPs who included Kilak South MP Gilbert Olanya and Busongara South MP Jackson Mbaju.

The ruling NRM had 16 MPs, and two Independent MPs. Speaker of Parliament Rebecca Kadaga chaired the session. Among the ministers, the debate was also attended by only the ICT and national guidance minister Frank Tumwebaze and state minister for planning David Bahati although towards the end the deputy premier Moses Ali and the state minister for housing Chris Baryomunsi entered the chambers. Tumwebaze said the Bill was necessary for securing data.

 “In the Bill, we areputting obligations on the collectors and controllers of people’s data so thatit is well managed and punitive measures against people who give privateinformation to the press without authority,” he explained. The Bill he said,aims at giving effect to clause 27 (2) of the Constitution which states:

“No person shall be subjected to interference with the privacy of that person’s home, correspondence, communication or other property.” MPs, Raphael Magyezi (Igara West), David Abala (Ngora County) and Jova Kamateka (Mitooma Woman), opposed the proposal to establish an authority to regulate data management.

 Kole Woman MP Judith Alyek said: “This Bill is necessary. Even us MPs our personal data is not protected. It was put on the social media with our telephone numbers and it landed into the hands of unscrupulous people.”

Nurses with degrees are stuck. They cannot be placed anywhere in the health service system because there is no scheme of service that defines their placement, duties and salary scale, Justus Cherop, the president of Uganda Nurses and Midwives Union, has revealed.

 In an interview with UGANDANZ, Cherop said although the Government introduced degree programmes for nurses in order to catch up with the rest of the world, there is no structure in place to accommodate them.

 “The reason westarted it (degree courses) is because we wanted to catch up with the rest ofthe world, but we forgot that nursing is a profession of its own. There is ascheme of service that describes a person’s responsibilities, where they canwork and the salary scale. In our setting this is not there. They have not putthem (graduate nurses) in any scale. The hospitals are not restructured,” hesaid.

Cherop said Uganda still has the colonial hospital structure which was designed to cater for certificate and diploma nurses.

“We are appealing to government to make sure that thestructures exist in the hospitals to cater for the degree nurses,” he said.

Cherop revealed that although they have been able to lobby government to appoint 132 nurses to the position of assistant district health officers, there are over 1,000 others who have nowhere to be placed.

“More worrying is that every year many are graduating fromuniversities. We need structures where they will all fit in,” he said.

Cherop said most of the nurses were now doing what they were not trained to do, including working as pharmacists. He said the draft scheme of service that would provide for this is lying idle at the Ministry of Public Service since 2012.

Cherop said this had rendered them unable to appropriately place nurses with degrees, PhDs and those in consultancies within the health system. However, Catherine Bitarakwate, the permanent secretary Ministry of Public Service, said the scheme was approved in 2017.

She said this was after discussions had been held between Ministry of Public Service, Ministry of Health and representatives of the nurses’ body. The Uganda Nurses and Midwives Council (UNMC) could also not readily provide the total number of graduate nurses even after being contacted several times.

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The ruling NRM had 16 MPs, and two Independent MPs. Speakerof Parliament Rebecca Kadaga chaired the session. Among the ministers, thedebate was also attended by only the ICT and national guidance minister FrankTumwebaze and state minister for planning David Bahati although towards the endthe deputy premier Moses Ali and the state minister for housing ChrisBaryomunsi entered the chambers. Tumwebaze said the Bill was necessary forsecuring data.

There were only about 20 legislators out of the 459 MPs as Parliament debated the Data Protection and Privacy Bill on Tuesday. Out of the 20 MPs who attended the plenary session to debate the Bill, there were only two Opposition MPs who included Kilak South MP Gilbert Olanya and Busongara South MP Jackson Mbaju.

 “In the Bill, we areputting obligations on the collectors and controllers of people’s data so thatit is well managed and punitive measures against people who give privateinformation to the press without authority,” he explained.

The Bill he said, aims at giving effect to clause 27 (2) of the Constitution which states:

“No person shall be subjected to interference with theprivacy of that person’s home, correspondence, communication or otherproperty.”

 MPs, Raphael Magyezi (Igara West), David Abala (Ngora County) and Jova Kamateka (Mitooma Woman), opposed the proposal to establish an authority to regulate data management.

Kole Woman MP Judith Alyek said: “This Bill is necessary. Even us MPs our personal data is not protected. It was put on the social media with our telephone numbers and it landed into the hands of unscrupulous people.”

By Hannington Mutabazi As the Inter-party Organisation for Dialogue (IPOD) summit fast approaches, questions emerge after Forum for Democratic Change (FDC) and Democratic Party (DP) issued statements withdrawing from the summit. The two major opposition parties FDC and DP — this week said they would not attend the IPOD summit scheduled for December 12 at Speke Resort Munyonyo, calling it a waste of time sitting on a round table with NRM to address their challenges.

 Michael Osinde Orach the spokesperson of UPC, which is currently chairing the IPOD, urged the parties to reconsider their positions and take part in the dialogue. He said the summit should be inevitable and the leaders should tolerate each other.

“We need to put our motherland Uganda first ahead of ourpolitical ambitions and positions,” Osinde said during their weekly pressbriefing at Uganda house yesterday.

 By Mary Karugaba Members of Parliament have recommended that the Minister of Works and Transport withdraws the Civil Aviation Authority (Amendment) Bill 2017 and instead two separate Bills — the Civil Aviation Authority Amendment Bill 2018 and the Uganda Airports Authority Bill 2018. After reviewing the Bill that was tabled in June 2017, the MPs on the physical infrastructure committee recommended that for effective and easy management of aviation services, CAA’s regulatory and operational functions should be run separately and covered under two Bills.

 In a committee report to Parliament, the members agreed that a separate body — Uganda Airport Authority — be created with the role of running and developing the day-to-day operations of all airports and aerodromes in Uganda.

“The committee, therefore, recommends that the CAA(Amendment) Bill 2017 be withdrawn by the Executive and the process ofreforming the aviation policy, legal and institutional framework be immediatelyinitiated to separate the regulatory from the operational functions and with itthe creation of separate Uganda Airports Authority,” the report reads.

 The MPs argued that successful aviation sectors in the region and the world over had structurally delineated regulation and operation functions. The MPs said the recommendation follows several requests from a number of stakeholders they interacted with during public hearing on the Bill. “The committee encountered an emergent concern from a cross-section of stakeholders on the need to structurally delineate the regulatory and operational functions of the CAA.

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The major justification for this proposal is to avoid conflict of interest, specialisation and efficiency,” the report states. However, the members anticipated that the separation may come with a cost implication, but proposed that the revenues from operating airports and aerodromes should be used to offset the costs, especially for the airport authority. The CAA Amendment Bill 2017 was tabled in Parliament after Uganda scored poorly in the 2014 International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) audit.

The poor score was attributed to legal, regulatory and operational environment of a aviation management in Uganda. The Bill was, therefore, initiated to reform the aviation legal regime with a view of enhancing Uganda’s compliance level from 61.6% to at least 75%. The Bill proposes, among others, to establish an independent accident and investigations unit and changing the title of the managing director to director general.

 It seeks to provide unhindered access to aerodromes and renaming the CAA to Uganda Civil Aviation Authority. It also proposes to cover civil aviation legislation that are not covered in the Act. The report cites the example of Kenya, Tanzania, Rwanda and Ethiopia where the two bodies perform different functions.

“In Kenya, the Kenyan Airport Authority is established as anautonomous body charged with providing and managing all airports in Kenya andcurrently operates nine civilian airports and airstrips. On the other hand, theKenyan Civil Aviation Authority was established to regulate and overseeaviation safety and security, economic regulation of air services,” the reportstates.

By Betty Amamukirori Nurses with degrees are stuck. They cannot be placed anywhere in the health service system because there is no scheme of service that defines their placement, duties and salary scale, Justus Cherop, the president of Uganda Nurses and Midwives Union, has revealed. In an interview with Our Website, Cherop said although the Government introduced degree programmes for nurses in order to catch up with the rest of the world, there is no structure in place to accommodate them.

 “The reason we startedit (degree courses) is because we wanted to catch up with the rest of theworld, but we forgot that nursing is a profession of its own. There is a schemeof service that describes a person’s responsibilities, where they can work andthe salary scale. In our setting this is not there. They have not put them(graduate nurses) in any scale. The hospitals are not restructured,” he said.

 Cherop said Uganda still has the colonial hospital structure which was designed to cater for certificate and diploma nurses.

“We are appealing to government to make sure that thestructures exist in the hospitals to cater for the degree nurses,” he said.

Cherop revealed that although they have been able to lobby government to appoint 132 nurses to the position of assistant district health officers, there are over 1,000 others who have nowhere to be placed.

“More worrying is that every year many are graduating fromuniversities. We need structures where they will all fit in,” he said.

Cherop said most of the nurses were now doing what they were not trained to do, including working as pharmacists. He said the draft scheme of service that would provide for this is lying idle at the Ministry of Public Service since 2012. Cherop said this had rendered them unable to appropriately place nurses with degrees, PhDs and those in consultancies within the health system.

However, Catherine Bitarakwate, the permanent secretary Ministry of Public Service, said the scheme was approved in 2017. She said this was after discussions had been held between Ministry of Public Service, Ministry of Health and representatives of the nurses’ body. The Uganda Nurses and Midwives Council (UNMC) could also not readily provide the total number of graduate nurses even after being contacted several times.