Reducing Maternal and Child Mortality Through Improved Health Care Delivery in Kampala

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As many countries in Africa experience impressive economic growth, the continent has made significant gains in health such as an overall reduction in child mortality. However, gains made vary and certain segments of the population remain vulnerable. For example, while child mortality is on the decline in Uganda, the maternal mortality rate is still high and estimated at 435 deaths per 100,000 live births. About 30 per cent of households in the capital Kampala are run by women, meaning Uganda’s high maternal death rate has far reaching effects societally and economically.

As part of its strategy for equitable health in Africa, the AfDB is working together with the Ugandan Ministry of Health to improve access to high-quality and affordable health care services for the Kampala Metropolitan area, particularly for those who need it most. Launched in August, 2012, The Improvement of the Kampala City Health Services Project will rehabilitate and upgrade the Mulango National Referral Hospital and upgrade two health centres at Kawempe and Kirrudu into general hospitals.

The project aims to decongest and improve the quality of services at Mulango National Referral Hospital and generally in the City of Kampala through a revitalized referral system and enhanced service delivery capacities. The project has three main components:

  • Reducing mortality and morbidity rates, particularly in women and children through expanded and improved public health services in Kampala.
  • Revitalized Referral and Counter-referral Systems, including patient transportation.
  • Building capacity and strengthening the health system by improving the management and administration of health services with particular attention to the serious human resources crisis in the health sector.

The project will have significant health and socio-economic impacts, as a result of improved access to quality health care for an estimated three million persons, an estimated 39 per cent of whom live in poverty. It will address the disparities in access to specialized health services, particularly for women.