Thursday, 1 December 2011

About Uganda Healthcare Federation

Uganda Health Care Federation came into being in 2010 because of the need to have an umbrella organization which represents the private health sector in Uganda. 
There are many associations which represent various interest groups in the private health sector such as Uganda Medical Association, Uganda Medical and Dental Practitioners Association, but none of them is sector wide to represent the entire private, non-state health sector.

It has increasingly become apparent that in order to foster for the interests of private healthcare sector, one need a body which speaks with sufficient clout and is broad enough to represent the various interests groups and be taken seriously by the government.

More to this is that, in the past the Ministry of Health has primarily worked with the private not for profit organizations while purely private have been marginalized. This attitude is rapidly changing within the Ministry of Health and Ministry of Finance. This has been fueled by demand from the government side to have a substantive body which can speak for the private healthcare sector as well as the private non-profit sector. In essence the federation will represent all interests of non-state health sector players to the government and East Africa Community.

The structure of UHF is based on Kenya Healthcare Federation and the Private Sector Foundation Uganda’s model in which the federation provides the opportunity for the various institutional associations, professional associations and corporate bodies to be represented on the federation’s board.This structure ensures that no interest group goes un represented.
UHF board is a representative of private providers, medical insurance companies, facility based health plan providers, pharmaceutical manufacturers, medical equipment and laboratory equipment companies, professional bodies, or associations representing professional and mission hospitals.

The associations which are registered within the federation will continue with their own advocacy and representation of their particular interests in various forums, but this platform will be for the private healthcare sector to speak with one voice.
The federation was registered as a company limited by guarantee in the last quarter of 2010 and a substantive board was elected in 2011 on the federation’s 1st annual general meeting.

Key Mile stones
 Following are other key milestones that UHF has so far achieved
1.      UHF has been registered as a company limited by guarantee. It is also an associate member of Private Sector Foundation Uganda where it is represented at board level. The secretariat is currently housed at USAID Health Initiatives for the private Sector (HIPS) Project offices at Plot 6, Coppice Road, Windsor crescent in Kololo.
2.          UHF has held its first Annual General Meeting. This was conducted in June 2011 where the federation formed/voted its 1st board of directors.
3.    Uganda Healthcare Federation has made substantial progress in representing the interests of the Private health sector, for instance UHF has represented the private health sector at the level of Presidential Investors’ round table meetings. In these meetings where UHF is represented by the chairman- Dr. Ian Clarke-the chairman and Dr. Ben Mbonye-vice chairman; the federation has been able to lobby for setting up a health fund similar to the education sector and change of VAT from exempt to Zero rated.
4.    UHF has represented Uganda’s health sector at the East Africa Health Fairs that take place in each member country once a year. In these health fairs, delegates from each country share experiences on progress made in their health sector, investment opportunities available as well as pick key learning experiences on how to better the health sector in the region. These fairs are aimed at exposing the investment opportunities among these countries as well as enable these countries to borrow knowledge for improvement. (All other East African countries are in the process of forming healthcare federations, except Kenya’s federation which is more established)
5.    UHF has also engaged World Bank’s private arm International Financial Corporation (IFC) in various discussions regarding availing long term low-interest financing to health care providers and currently awaiting finalization of these discussions.
6.    UHF has also engaged constantly the Ministry of Finance to set up a fund similar to the agriculture fund which would avail capital to those involved in the health sector.
 Now, there is still a lot that is required to be done to get the federation off its feet. This being an organization that represents the interests of the various private health sector players with one voice, it is imperative that all the groups are represented in the Federation. 
Currently there are only 14 members in the federation. These 14 members do not represent even half of the interest groups that need to come together and speak as one voice. Yet also out of the fourteen, only four have paid the membership fee.

This is a call to all of us to join the federation and become active members as we join efforts to make the private health sector in Uganda more efficient and effective. 

Membership Categories
UHF has three membership categories these include:

These include large private or non-government hospitals and large clinics. Smaller clinics are represented through their association membership.  Corporate from other health sector players are also in this category – such as pharmaceutical distributors and wholesalers, pharmaceutical manufacturers, insurance companies covering medical insurance, Facility based healthcare providers (HMOs), medical equipment suppliers, laboratory equipment suppliers and service companies for the healthcare sector.

Uganda National Association of Private Hospitals
Uganda Private Medical and Dental Practitioners Association
Facility Based Health plan providers association
Uganda Insurance association
Uganda Pharmaceutical manufacturers’ association
Uganda Pharmaceutical Distributors association
Uganda Medical Association
Uganda Protestant Medical bureau
Uganda Catholic Medical bureau

Pharmaceutical Society of Uganda
Uganda Nurses and Midwives Council
Uganda Medical and Dental Practitioners Council
Uganda Allied Health Professionals

Board Members
The board is comprised of:
  1. Dr Ian Clarke – Board Chairman
  2. Dr. Ben Mbonye – Vice Chairman
  3. Dr. Patrick Luwaga – Secretary
  4. Dr. Peter Kawanguzi- Acting Treasurer 
  5. Kinny Nayer- Member.
  6. Nazeem Mohammed – Member
  7. Yusufu Sembatya - Member  
  8. Lindsay Davidson – Member
  9. Dr. Benon Mugerwa - Member 
  10. Patrick Mpiima – Member
  11. Dr. Margaret Mungherera -  Member
  12. Dr. Henry Kasozi
  13. Dr. John Wakida
  14. Dr. Lorna Muhirwe
  15. Dr. Sam Orach

 Our current Members

Corporate Members
§  International Air Ambulance (IAA)
§  Africa Air Rescue (AAR)
§  Karuri Pharmaceuticals (U) Ltd
§  Bishop Masereka Foundation
§  Nakasero Hospital
§  International Medical Group
§  Mayanja Memorial Hospital
§  Sanlam Life Insurance
§  Quality Chemicals Industries Ltd
§  Norvik Enterprises Ltd
§  Surgipharm Pharmaceuticals Ltd
§  Kadic Hospital

Interest oriented -associations
§  Facility-Based Health plan Providers Associations (FHPA)
§  Uganda Medical and Dental Practitioners Association
§  Uganda Insurers Association
§  Uganda Medical Association
§  Uganda Catholic Medical Bureau
§  Uganda Protestant Medical Bureau
§  Uganda pharmaceutical Manufacturers’ association
§  Uganda Pharmaceutical Distributors’ Association

Professional/regulatory Bodies
§  Uganda Allied Health Professionals
§  Uganda Nurses and Midwives Council
§  Uganda Medical and Dental Practitioners'Council
§  Pharmaceutical Society of Uganda 


To bring all private (non state) sector stakeholders under one umbrella body for the sole purpose of advocating policy change, promoting and championing the interest of the private sector.

       §   To address problems of a common nature within the private health sector
§   To advocate for issues that affect the health sector at large.
§   To compliment the public sector’s work regarding health of the country.
§   To monitor the work being done in the health sector, identify loopholes and suggest means of improvement via dialogue and advocacy.

Core Objectives
1.0               The objectives for which the Company is established are:
(a)   To promote and enhance medical care in Uganda with emphasis on the provision of affordable and accessible quality health care on a sustainable basis.
(b)  To provide a forum for consultation and strengthen the voice of the health industry players to promote, protect and champion the interests of the health sector.
(c) To promote development of the standards offering quality health care while encouraging practice of medical and business ethics
(d)  Work in partnership with the government to build sound policy, regulatory and institutional framework supportive of increased productive investment and private sector led growth.
(e)   To create and promote a vibrant, free, competitive and rapidly growing health sector as part of the overall national economy
(f)    Enhance knowledge of the private sector of the situation of healthcare delivery,
(g)   Investigate gaps in the delivery of healthcare, and identify opportunities for Public Private Partnership (PPP), and increased investment in the health sector;
(h)  Build capacity of key public and private interlocutors to engage in effective Public Private Dialogue (PPD) to result in maximum.
(i)    To unite, organize and promote all Associations and Companies involved in healthcare business;
(j)    To promote and protect the interest of the private healthcare sector;
(k)  To work together to achieve marketing and consolidation issues of the healthcare sector;
(l)    To establish a networking system amongst the members;
(m) To establish a collective action on regulations and international standards of the healthcare sector;
(n)  To form a lobby or pressure group to represent the interests of the Company;
(o)To encourage members to adopt improved and better quality mechanisms in healthcare
(p)  To impact on the status of healthcare service delivery in  Uganda;
(q)  To take up such steps by person or written appeals, public meeting or otherwise for the purpose of procuring the funds of the Company and to promote activities for the purpose of raising money for the Company.


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