The Ministry of Health has asked for an additional Shs652 billion to fight the Covid-19 pandemic.
While appearing before Parliament’s Health Committee to defend the 2022/2023 ministerial budget estimates, Health Minister Dr. Jane Ruth Aceng said that the money would be spent on the procurement of Covid-vaccines and related supplies.
She said they target to vaccinate 22 million people. To date, 19,887,591 have been vaccinated.
It should be noted that in 2020, the government allocated Shs500 billion for COVID-19 vaccines. In one of her last addresses about COVID-19, Aceng disclosed that they paid Shs18.5 billion, added another Shs30 billion, and another Shs80 billion to UNICEF for vaccines. She added that the balance was paid to the African Union to help them secure more vaccines.
Meanwhile, Aceng told Parliament’s Health Committee that in their revised budgetary estimates for the 2022/2023 financial year, the ministry considered a presidential directive to pay a medical doctor a minimum salary of Shs5 million per month. Also, they want to boost their staff numbers.
“Given the resource constraints, the health sector will not be able to fill all vacant posts in the next financial year. The current staffing is 69%, which is below the target of 85%. An additional Shs300 billion will be required to attain the 85% staffing level,” she said.