Foundation solicits funds to aid treatment of people with kidney diseases
With the increasing prevalence of kidney diseases and deaths of patients due to lack of funds for treatment, stakeholders have solicited for funds to help people with the disease finance dialysis and transplant.
They made the plea at the unveiling of the St. Remmy Foundation Kidney Care Trust Fund, an initiative to gather about N500 million to finance treatment and care of people with the disease, as well as improve services and training of healthcare providers.
In his welcome address, the Coordinator/Trustee, St. Remmy Foundation, Obetta Remigius, said presently, kidney diseases have become worrisome to humanity, as global records show one in every ten persons has a form of kidney disease and appreciable percentage of Nigerian population is affected with this ailment. He said the socio – economic consequences of kidney-related disease are unimaginable, as there is need for drastic and collaborative actions to curtail its excesses.
“Substantial action should be taken by each state to reduce poverty, increase equity, improve nutrition, advance education, and develop health services and human resources. It is of essence to know that this project is all about humanity, which we are part of and sequel to this, I humbly request that we make whatever contributions we can towards this efforts of saving lives,” he said.
The guest lecturer, Consultant Nephrologist at the Lagos State University College of Medicine, Prof. Olugbenga Awobusuyi, noted that kidney diseases place heavy socio-economic burden on individuals, families and societies, especially as patients in Nigeria pay out of pocket for dialysis.
He said the cost of standard care for a typical patient is more than N500, 000 monthly for regular maintenance haemodialysis, adding that this is definitely out of reach for majority of people in the country, as more than 90 percent of people with End- Stage Kidney Disease die within one year of starting dialysis treatment.
Awobusuyi noted that unlike in the high-income countries that spend more than two to three percent of their annual healthcare budget on the treatment of end-stage kidney disease, even though those receiving such treatment represent under 0.03 percent of the total population.
“Premature deaths can leave families with significant economic loss from incurred medical expenditures, and from the loss of a contributing household member. The costs of managing the diseases to individuals, families, and communities are also high. Treating End-Stage renal disease with dialysis or transplantation often leads to catastrophic spending, which robs wage earners of the ability to provide for their families.
“Leaving the kidney disease patients and their families alone will not produce the gains in their health status and improvement in health care delivery for managing kidney failure that we all want to see. Hence there is a need for joint intervention to reduce the menace of this killer disease,” he said
The Consultant Nephrologist further said it is imperative for all stakeholders to appreciate the enormity of the burden of kidney diseases in our society, while they develop strategic approaches that would generate the much-needed resources for the care of patients with the diseases.