Judge gives Mulago last chance in child case

KAMPALA

High Court Judge Lydia Mugambe has given Mulago National Referral Hospital one more chance for an amicable settlement of a case of theft of a child from the health facility.

The judge’s decision on Wednesday was prompted by Ms Juliet Nalukenge, the attorney for the state and Mulago hospital who asked court to grant them another chance to explore the option of out of court settlement.
The aggrieved parents Michael Mubangizi and Jennifer Musimenta accuse the hospital of denying them access to the medical records regarding the birth of their missing twin child.

The couple say they delivered twins on March 12, 2012, but one of them disappeared mysteriously and they are holding the hospital liable.
Lawyer David Kabanda, who represents the parents and the Centre for Health, Human Rights and Development (CEHURD), a civil society organisation, endorsed the hospital’s request to exhaust the option of out of court settlement.

Deadline for case

Justice Mugambe gave the two parties up to September 29 to resolve the dispute and report back to court on that date.
The judge warned that if the out of court settlement fails by that date, court will proceed to hear and determine the case on its merits. Court had on several occasions given the hospital and the parents opportunity to settle the matter amicably but the process had not born positive results.

The judge asked the director of Mulago hospital, Dr Baterana Byarugaba, CEHURD and the parents to utilise the court vacation that starts next week to have a discussion on the matter. Access to patient information is
a key component of the right to health.

But according to CEHURD, a considerable number of patients visiting health facilities have been denied access to their health information and most of these cases go unnoticed since patients are not aware of their rights.

awesaka@ug.nationmedia.com

SOURCE: Daily Monitor

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