The management, coordination and supervisory responsibility for the various health laboratories is not under one entity: a) Health laboratories fall under the department of Integrated Curative Services b) Laboratory activities related to surveillance and public health emergence management are coordinated under the department of National Disease Control (NDC) c) Research laboratories are governed by the Uganda National Health Research Organization (UNHRO)
CPHL currently provides stewardship for the national laboratory network to guide the prevention of disease and promotion of health in Uganda through early detection of disease burden in order to achieve overall sustainable development. It is the technical focal point of laboratory services in the Ministry of Health which also provides reference testing. However, its present status as unit under NDC constrains its ability to effectively handle its dual role. The revised MOH structure (2016) positioned laboratories in the department of integrated curative services.
Efforts are under way to establish the Uganda National Health Laboratory Services (UNHLS) by a parliament Bill (UNHLS Bill, 2016) to offer coordination, management and stewardship of all health laboratory services. The UNHLS is meant to coordinate all health laboratories including specialized reference laboratories such as CPHL and S/NTRL as well as all lower level health laboratories in the tiered health care system.
The Uganda Virus research institute (UVRI), Uganda Cancer institute (UCI), Tropical Diseases Institute (TDRI) and the Natural Chemotherapeutic Research Institute (NCRI) shall continue to be governed and controlled by the Uganda National Health Research Organization. These laboratories are mandated by the UNHRO ACT (2009, 2011) to conduct health related research in specified areas. Laboratories under UNHRO shall continue to collaborate with UNHLS to provide laboratory testing capacities that have not yet been established within the UNHLS network.