A nursing officer in Arua District who wheeled a patient for about three five kilometres after failure to get an ambulance has been offered a scholarship.
Doris Okundinia trekked about three kilometres pushing a patient on a wheel chair from Ediofe Health Centre to Arua Regional Referral Hospital, after waiting in vain for an ambulance from district Covid-19 taskforce.
She holds a certificate in Comprehensive Nursing.
However, according to a May, 4 , 2020 letter to the Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Health, Dr. Diana Atwine the Uganda Christian Institute in Lira has offered Okundinia a scholarship for her to pursue a diploma in nursing at the institute.
“The purpose of this letter is therefore to notify the Ministry of Health management and to seek for further guidance on how we can engage with the beneficiary soon after the lockdown and to officially hand over to her this package,” the letter by the institute’s chairperson of the governing council, Prof Alfred Olwa reads in part.
The institute says that the act by the nurse was a maximum display of her professional commitment to loving, serving humanity and saving life needed in the medical field but also a true definition of the nurses and midwives principle to love and share.
The offer is effective in the immediate intake when normal operations resume after the Covid-19 lockdown.
“This offer is channeled through the Ministry of Health to encourage many health workers to continue with commitment of saving lives and serving humanity. As a Health training school, this is just part of various scholarship programs to several vulnerable students training to become health workers in the country,” the institute’s letter to the Health Ministry says.
Okundinia confirmed that he had been informed of the scholarship offer that she said is warmly welcome.
“Yes. I have been informed by one of the institute’s officials. I am grateful. I have already served for 5 years and upgrading my career is absolutely a good offer,” she said.
Following the incident in which Okundinia trekked about 3 kilometres pushing a patient on a wheel chair to Arua Regional Referral Hospital, authorities in the district accused her of exposing them.
However, several Ugandans including the Minister for Health Dr. Jane Ruth Aceng took to social media to applaud the nurse for saving the life of a Ugandan in this coronavirus crisis.
“A true hero, she is. True definition of service before self. I celebrate Sr Doris and all our health workers who sacrifice their lives to save thousands of lives daily. I appeal to the public to remember them in prayer and support them by following the MoH guidelines,” Dr.Aceng tweeted.
Last week, Minister Aceng visited Arua and personally met with the nurse before praising her for being selfless and committed to saving lives.
“This is a time for unity, team work, sacrifice, hard work, selflessness and a time for no politics,” she said.
“You (Okundinia) will get an award for being exemplary health worker, “while speaking on radio Parcis on May, 1, 2020.