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‘Government should remove duty on hypertension-related drugs to reduce kidney failure’


Kidney<br />PHOTO:

In a bid to reduce the rising scourge of kidney disease in Nigeria, a Consultant Nephrologist, Dr. Ebun Bamgboye, has advised the government to remove duty on hypertension-related drugs because it is affecting the health sector.

Bamgboye, during St. Nicholas annual free kidney disease screening, said the duty has hampered the fight against kidney disease in the country; hence, government should implement programmes for the prevention, screening, and treatment of the disease.

In his words: “There is no reason why government should be charging 30 per cent duty on anti-hypertension and diabetes drugs when we know how important they are. When the duty charge is removed, it plummets the cost of drugs by 30 -50 percent, making it affordable for the common man.”


He added that the cost of treating hypertension is only a fraction of what is needed for treating kidney disease, hence the need for government to take proactive measures in ensuring that hypertension drugs is affordable for the masses.

“The amount of money you would use in treating someone with kidney failure would equally treat more than 100 people with hypertension,” he said.

On reducing post transplant relapse, Bamgboye said that government should make provision for post transplant care.

He said that many people solicit money for transplant only to suffer relapse because they are not able to afford the drugs that ensures the continual functioning of the kidney.

“Kidney care after transplant is indefinite and the drugs used to protect the kidneys cost about N600, 000 which many cannot afford,” he added.

In his words: “Kidney dialysis and transplant in some Western country is free. We know that government may not be able to do this in Nigeria but they can cushion the effect by providing dialysis units, empower the available units and ensure that consumables be made available at subsidised rates.”

On this year’s World Kidney Day with the theme: “Kidney and the Women’s health,” Bamgboye who is also the Clinical Director at St Nicholas Hospital, said that the hospital treats over 120 kidney disease patients annually averaging 10 new cases every month.

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