Parliament has granted Busiki County MP Paul Akamba Leave to bring a private member’s bill entitled Patient’s Rights and Responsibilities Bill, 2017 amidst protests from government.
The proposed Bill intends to empower patients to participate in the process of seeking or receiving health care and requires a patient to be treated with respect and dignity.
MP Akamba said that the Bill will expose the hidden conduits behind violation of patients’ rights and challenge the conditions that create patients’ rights violation that have for long gone unpunished.
“It is just and equitable therefore that this law seeking to empower all of us who are patients and patients in waiting, is fast-tracked and enacted. I call upon colleagues to support this motion for it concerns us all and all Ugandans,” Akamba said.
He added, “As we prepare to appropriate the national budget to the Health sector, this law can be used as an accountability tool where patients can demand for better health services.”
State minister for Health (General Duties) Sarah Opendi attempted to sideline the proposed Bill saying that government is not comfortable with it.
“If this motion is adopted as a bill in its state then we will have to bring another bill-Health Workers Rights Bill. So it is going to create some bit of a problem within the sector,” Opendi said. He added that Uganda has the clients charter that is quite sufficient and addresses above matters.
However, Oulanyah ruled that the motion does not in any way violate provisions of the Constitution.
Akamba is now expected to return with the proposed Bill for debate before it will be sent to a committee for scrutiny.