Makerere University hospital doubles COVID-19 testing fees

Makerere University Hospital has increased the COVID-19 testing fees to 200,000 Shillings, up from 100,000 Shillings that was previously charged.

The university stated that the hike was due to a halt in support from development partners who had helped subsidise the cost.

Prof Josephat Byamugisha, the Executive Director of Makerere University Hospital says they were forced to increase the testing fees after they ran out of testing kits and personal protective equipment-PPE that was previously supplied by development partners.

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He also added that they have increased the number of staff to ensure quality services.

Other private testing laboratories have been forced to increase the cost of the test despite the government reducing the cost at public testing facilities.

At all government facilities, testing is now carried out at a cost of 185,000 Shillings while at other private testing laboratories like Medipal, the cost has been increased from 330,000 to 350,000 per test.

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Dr Diana Atwine, the Permanent Secretary at the Ministry of Health says they cannot control how much private facilities charge for testing COVID.

“They are not using our kits and are buying their test kits separately and they set their prices as such. We can only decide fees for laboratories that we provide testing kits and even PPE,” she said.

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