Mbale Regional referral hospital has stopped the admission of patients with mental health illnesses until further notice.
Mbale hospital director Dr. Emmanuel Tugeineyo confirmed the development today.
He said that the hospital had come to the decision because Mbale hospital is repurposing the mental health ward to cater for patients with the novel Coronavirus (Covid-19).
Dr. Tugeineyo said that Mbale hospital will for now only treat outpatients. This is patients who report to the hospital for check-up or medication and leave.
Mental health patients who need more detailed medical care will be referred to the national psychiatric facility at Butabika Hospital.
Dr. Tugeineyo said that the mental health ward has a capacity of 40 beds which will help accommodate the growing number of Covid-19 patients.
Mbale hospital currently has 16 confirmed Covid-19 patients yet the ordinary admission wing has a ten-bed capacity.
Uganda continues to register more Covid-19 cases with the national figure now at 797 confirmed Covid-19 cases. Of these, 699 people have recovered while there remain 98 active cases under treatment in various parts of the country.
Mbale hospital is one of the designated centres to receive Covid-19 patients as it is a regional referral hospital.