SPEED Fellowship graduates argued to improve Uganda’s health system


Graduands posing with their certificates after the two-year course in health systems management. At the back are their mentors.


On 15th August 2019, the 2nd  Cohort of the Fellowship Programme in Health Systems Management (FPHSM) graduated after two years of study. FPHSM is supported by the SPEED-For Universal Health Coverage in Uganda project which is housed under Makerere University School of Public Health (MakSPH).

The goal of this fellowship is to develop health system managers who are competent to manage a wide range of health services challenges, leading to better health care delivery and improved health of the population.

In her opening remarks at the graduation, Dr Elizabeth Ekirapa Kiracho, the Head of Department of Health Policy Planning and Management at MakSPH congratulated the Fellows upon completion of a challenging but fruitful two-year program.

Participants at the dissemination and graduation ceremony of Fellows of the Health Systems Management Programme at Piato Restaurant.

“After the course, it’s time to influence, impact and change our country beginning from our homes, “she appealed. Dr Ekirapa also advised students to be the light in darkness in order to promote Universal Health Coverage (UHC).

Dr Christine Kirunga Tashobya, a Post Doc Fellow at the SPEED project who coordinated the Fellowship programme congratulated the nine fellows for completing their two-year programme with flying colours. She also noted that the course was practical in nature which exposed the fellows to real-life experiences about health management

The highlight of the graduation ceremony was Fellows sharing findings from different research projects they engaged in the two years.

Presenting his findings at the function, Dr David Okumu, one of the graduates, who is also the District Health Officer of Tororo was so grateful for the programme. He said; “I learnt to make health systems better since we were taught to be innovative to improve the health system. There are challenges which come up daily but I am now beefed with the necessary knowledge to handle them.” Dr Okumu.   He also added that he learnt the need to appreciate private health service as very impactful service providers. Dr Okumu made this remark while making a presentation on the topic; “Integration of private health practitioners (PHP) into the district health system; an action research study using the health management information system (HMIS) as an entry point, in Tororo District.

Also speaking at the graduation was the SPEED project Director, Prof Freddie Ssengooba, who congratulated the scholars for accomplishing their journey and contributing to the health sector. “Currently the biggest problem is leadership and this is the area that we need you  to address. I am glad that the Fellows are already training other leaders,” said Prof. Ssengooba. In addition, he thanked partners like Uganda Medical Association, Institute of Tropical Medicines- Antwerp,   MakSPH, European Union and Ministry of Health for partnering with SPEED project in building a better public health workforce so as to promote Universal Health Coverage.

Prof Freddie Sengooba  (right) handing a certificate of completion to Dr Moses Muwanga


To crown off the event was Prof Christopher Garimoi Orach, the Head of Department of Community Health and Behavioural Science at MakSPH, urged the Fellows to be advocates for better health.

He also thanked the organisers, supervisors and mentors of the Fellows for supporting the programme through the two years.

The Fellowship programme is a collaboration between SPEED – For Universal Health Coverage in Uganda-project, the Ministry of Health (Uganda), Makerere University School of Public Health and the Institute of Tropical Medicine, Antwerp.

Graduands pose for a group picture together with the team that worked tirelessly to make sure they finish the Fellowship with flying colours.