By our reporter

Uganda Heart Institute (UHI) carried out the first triple bypass heart surgery exclusively by Ugandan doctors.

This is a great milestone in the growth, ability and capacity of the Institute making it a competitive facility for medical tourism in the region.

This year, in January 2018, Uganda Heart Institute made a breakthrough by successfully carrying out a Triple Vessel ByPass Heart Surgery known as the Coronary Artery ByPass Grafting (CABG).

While addressing the public this morning, Hon. Dr. Jane Ruth Aceng said this complex procedure was the first of its kind carried out in Uganda by our very doctors.

The procedure involves creating an alternative route for blood to parts of the heart whose bloody supply has been blocked by a clot.

The pioneer patient was operated on 22nd January, managed successfully post operation and discharged 8 days later.

The second patient was operated on 31 January and will be discharged today.

The second patient, a National of Democratic Republic of Congo commended the entire UHI team on the care accorded to him. “I can now eat well, walk well and talk well. Uganda is blessed to have such good services and post operative care. We are happy to benefit from this as region” he said amidst smiles and relief of being cured.

The unit cost for comprehensive care including diagnostic interventions in Catheterization Laboratory, Operating Theatre and subsequent care in ICU/Coronary Care unit is approximately $5,000-8000 as compared to a cost of $20,000-30,000 on average when referred abroad.

“Since its inception in financial year 2012/2013 to 2017/18, UHI has carried out a total of 2950 operations at a cost of $14.75 million compared to $59 Million if they were referred abroad. This has saved us a cost of $44.25 million so far” Hon. Aceng noted.

UHI has been performing various cardiovascular interventions both in adults and children which has steadily reduced the percentage of patients referred abroad to about 20%.

“Ugandans, I appeal to all of you to utilize these services at UHI because we have adequate capacity to undertake these complex surgeries” Hon. Aceng added.