15 February 2013

Kenya: Half of Rift's Renal Patients Cannot Access Dialysis

Photo: Capital FM
Change in lifestyle has been named as one of the causes of kidney problems in Kenya (file photo).

Half of renal patients in Rift Valley are unable to access dialysis treatment and care.

Director of Medical Services Dr Francis Kimani has said the rising number of kidney ailments in the country has left the government unable to cater for dialysis in its hospitals.

Currently, dialysis services are offered in provincial hospitals in Rift Valley, Coast and Nyanza in addition to Kenyatta National Hospital.

While speaking during a ceremony where Safaricom Foundation donated two dialysis machines to the provincial general hospital in Nakuru Dr Kimani said the ministry of medical services is in final stages of plans to roll out dialysis services to other provincial hospitals in Kakamega, Garissa, Nyeri and Embu.

"It is unfortunate that dialysis costs up to Sh12,000 a session in some hospitals. My ministry's goal is to subsidize the cost so as to offer the service for a maximum of Sh4,000 per session in our facilities," he said.

"This makes access to much needed dialysis of kidney patients difficult. Kenyatta National Hospital, the biggest referral hospital in East Africa only has 13 machines," said the Foundatin chairman Joseph Ogutu.

Rift Valley PGH's medical superintendent John Murima said with the donation of the two machines, patient who previously had to travel to the Moi Teaching and Referral Hospital in Eldoret and the Kenyatta National Hospital in Nairobi can now access the service closer to home.

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