UCI Lira offers Arua nurse who wheeled a patient to a hospital full study scholarship

Health Minister Dr Jane [in black] tips nurse Doris during the former's visits to Arua recently.

It can take a few years or many years for someone’s future goals to be realised. It also involves little work or a lot of dedication, alongside reproach, for one to be publicly recognised and rewarded at the end of his or her journey.

How often we try to achieve this plan depends on how much time we offer to do our work diligently – keeping in mind service of humanity first.

A story was told of an Arua nurse who heartily wheeled an expectant woman for more than 3 kilometres from a health centre III up to Arua Regional Referral Hospital in order to get for her better medical attention.

Her story flooded both social media and the main stream media. Many applauded her, some asked the government to increase her pay but some leaders in Arua condemned her decision to wheel a patient “like that.”

While she may be waiting to enjoy many opportunities in the near future for her selflessness and hard work – above all saving a life, Doris Okundinia has been offered a full scholarship to study her Diploma in Nursing at the Uganda Christian Institute’s School of Nursing and Midwifery [UCISNW], Lira.

This offer is contained in a letter dated 4, May 2020 to the Permanent Secretary Ministry of Health, Dr Diana Atwine.

Under the caption SCHOLARSHIP OFFER TO DORIS OKUNDINIA TO PERSUE DIPLOMA IN NURSING AT UGANDA CHRISTIAN INSTITUTE LIRA, the Rt Rev Prof Dr. Alfred Olwa – Chairperson of the Governing Council wrote:

“…for about a month now, a photograph of a medical health worker at Ediofe Mission Health Centre III identified as Doris Okundinia has been published both in the mainstream and social media mediums, rolling a patient to the Arua RRH on a wheelchair. According to our source, Doris holds a certificate in Comprehensive Nursing.”

“This was, however, a maximum display of her professional commitment to loving, serving humanity and saving life and, to us in the medical field, this is a true definition of the Nurses and Midwives’ principle “TO LOVE AND SERVE” and we wish to congratulate her,” the Chairperson of the Governing Council added.

Prof Alfred Olwa, in the same letter, informed the Permanent Secretary of the decisions by the Board of Directors and the Governing Council to reward Doris Okundinia a full package of scholarship to pursue her Diploma in Nursing.

The “Full tuition, academic requirements and all related costs of training (all in Uganda Shillings), covering her Diploma program are as below,” the offer letter further reads.

Semester One: 1, 800, 000 tuition fees and 965, 000 requirements

Semester Two: 1, 800, 000 tuition fees and 480, 000 requirements

Semester Three: 1, 800, 000 tuition fees and 480, 000 requirements

“Others are in-kind personal protective requirements of 1, 675, 000, making a total of shs 9, 000,000 to successfully complete her course with us.”

According to the Board of Directors and the Governing Council’s resolution [s], this offer is effective in the immediate intake when normal operations resume.

Ms Doris Okundinia wheels a patient to hospital last month. Courtesy photo.

“This offer is channelled through the Ministry of Health to encourage many health workers to continue with commitment of saving lives and serving humanity. As a Health training school, this is just part of various scholarship programs to several vulnerable students training to become health workers in the country,” Prof Alfred Olwa further assured the Ministry.

He requested: “The purpose of this letter is therefore to notify the Ministry of Health management and to seek for further guidance on how we can engage with the beneficiary soon after the lockdown and to officially hand over to her this package.”

In a telephone interview with TND News on Wednesday evening, Doris Okundinia expressed her gratitude towards the offer. “Yes. I have been informed by one of the institute’s officials. I’m grateful,” she sounded.

“I have already served for 5 years and upgrading my career is absolutely a good offer,” she added.

Mr Bonny Okello Alele who is the Executive Director, also doubling as the head of the Directorate of Communications at Uganda Christian Institute, said: “As an institute training nurses and midwives, we felt touched and now the governing council has decided to give her full diploma scholarship.”

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