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Friday, August 07, 2009

Media Pressure

This summer, your prayers and the press are having some impact on justice in Bundibugyo and beyond.  Today the Monitor reported that as part of the investigation into the shortage of ARV drugs in Uganda, it became clear that HALF of the money allocated for their purchase was diverted by Ministry of Health into salaries for health workers and investments for the Ministry.  Now salaries and investments are important, but it should all be transparent, and based on a thoughtful prioritization.  Earlier in the week another paper reported that MOH had unofficially been instructing doctors NOT to start new patients on ARV's, something we've been hearing for months, but which no one wants to say in writing because no one wants to admit that we can't treat our patients.  Meanwhile we did get a supply here, to tide us over a bit longer, but the need is still acute.  

Also last week we linked to an editorial following up on an article about the delay in paying out medical worker compensation post-Ebola.  Yesterday it was announced that the compensation will finally be paid (more than a year late, but at least there is progress).  The widow and six children of the late Dr. Jonah will receive a substantial sum. . . equivalent to about 7 years' salary for a doctor in Uganda, or less than 7 months' salary for a doctor in America.  Luke put it in perspective that their entire life-sustaining-compensation package is TREE THOUSAND times less than Ronaldo's recent signing bonus as he switched football teams.  

So justice moves forward, slowly, pushed by truth.  Thanks to Amy and others who called newspapers and recruited prayer for these issues.


Amy Pasqualini said...

I pray that this is only the beginning for more exposure and attention to the ongoing crisis and need. Thank you for your care and faithfulness to so many that you serve and for your faithfulness to Jesus who calls us all to care for our neighbors, children, widows and strangers. You set an amazing example with such sparse provisions and such willing hearts. Thank you again for the posts and for the daily look into life in Uganda. May God continue to encourage and sustain you!

Cindy Nore said...

I was so happy to hear that after all this time, Dr. Jonah's family will at last receive the compensation they should have gotten long ago - nothing close to the financial compensation they deserve and nothing close to even touching the emotional price they have paid for their loss, but still a small victory in the midst of the loss and sorrow. Still praying that the ARV drugs would arrive in abudance and enough to meet the needs of those who so desparately need them. God bless - Cindy