After fourteen years of referring patients seeking kidney transplants to the public health institutions, Medical Associates Hospital has decided to resume transplant operations.
On Wednesday, a daughter donated one of her kidneys to her father. Both are now doing well.
And while it is more cost efficient for patients to seek treatment at public health institutions, many are taking matters into their own hands.
Yesterday, Professor Vijay Naraynsingh, of Medical Associates, in St Joseph, said some patients are not willing to endure long waiting times.
He said, “I don’t know how agonising it is for them to sit and wait and go for dialysis three times a week at significant cost, even though it is heavily subsidised by Government. The programme is overwhelmed so people still have to pay to have dialysis privately.”
Naraynsingh said transplants offer a much better outcome for patients with both patients and donors going on to lead healthy productive lives.
“I think we must continue the effort to encourage transplantation as it improves the quality of life of the patient, they don’t have to go for dialysis three times a week, they live a normal life they can travel as they wish free to move around and so on,” he said.
Naraynsingh said this of course depends on the availability of a compatible donor.
Kidney donors are chosen from three categories, live related, live non related, and cadaver donors.
Donors are screened by an ethics committee compromising members of the legal profession and religious leaders.
Donors also undergo psychological evaluation to ensure that there is no coercion or bribing involved in their decision making.
The first local kidney transplant was performed in 1988 on Nabbie Khan, who was diagnosed with advanced kidney disease at the age of 41.
Khan went on to become an advocate for organ donation before his death in 2020–thirty two years after his kidney transplant procedure.