Target: Yoweri Kaguta Museveni, President of Uganda
Goal: Encourage country to improve healthcare conditions for workers and citizens.
With just one doctor per 24,000 people and one nurse per 11,000 people, the state of healthcare in Uganda is well below guidelines set by the World Health Organization. According to a report by Human Rights Watch, the country’s government is poised to send more than 250 skilled health workers to other countries, robbing the country of skilled health workers and perpetuating ‘brain drain’—a phenomena that occurs when a country’s most intelligent individuals leave or migrate to another country due to political unrest or lack of opportunities, for example.
In a country where HIV rates are at an all time high and more than 17 women die each day in childbirth, qualified and skilled doctors and nurses are essential to the country’s healthcare system, which is steadily failing. Although healthcare workers are free to choose whatever country they’d like to practice in, Uganda’s lack of respect and mistreatment of its healthcare workers perpetuates the growing issue of brain drain.
Ugandan healthcare workers suffer from poor infrastructure, lack of access to equipment and supplies, inadequate facilities, work overload, poor working conditions and surprisingly low wages. A 2010 study revealed that doctors in Kenya earn four times what a doctor in Uganda earns, with hundreds opting to work in South Africa and other middle income companies, primarily for private sectors. In the end, health services are simply out of reach for many Ugandans, especially in rural areas, and healthcare worker retention and motivation remains a troubling dilemma.
Uganda’s government needs to stop depleting its country of valuable health workers and retain these skilled and bright minds by improving working conditions, especially salaries, and providing access to proper equipment, among other things.
Sign the petition to encourage President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni to end brain drain and improve the country’s healthcare system.
Dear President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni,
Uganda currently has the least amount of doctors and nurses per group of individuals in the world. The state of the country’s healthcare system is dire and is suffering greatly from ‘brain drain’– a phenomena that occurs when a country’s most intelligent individuals leave or migrate to another country due to political unrest or lack of opportunities, for example.
The country’s HIV rates are alarming, 17 women die a day during child birth by preventative causes, and individuals in rural areas completely lack access to healthcare workers and facilities. This is simply unacceptable.
By shipping off your best and brightest minds to other countries you are doing your country a disservice and robbing your citizens of valuable healthcare resources: doctors and nurses. I urge you to put an end to brain drain and encourage your country’s doctors and nurses to stay where they are needed most by improving working conditions, especially compensation, and implementing access to lifesaving technologies.
[Your Name Here]
Photo credit: National Cancer Institute via Wikimedia Commons