Barbados spending millions on kidney treatment
BRIDGETOWN, Barbados, Friday March 9, 2012 – Chronic kidney disease is on the rise in Barbados, resulting in the island’s lone general hospital spending $6.5 million annually on treatment.
Of that figure, the Queen Elizabeth Hospital spends $1.8 million per year to rent 23 dialysis machines for its Artificial Kidney Unit (AKU), and pays a further $300 per patient for the treatment of 24 patients at a private facility because the unit is too full.
Despite this, the numbers continue to rise with hypertension and diabetes still being identified as the main causes.
The number of patients requiring the services of the AKU has risen from three in 1979 to 200 in 2011, and is expected to double by 2020.
These were among statistics being revealed as countries around the world marked World Kidney Day yesterday under the theme Donate – Kidneys for Life – Receive.
Officials at the QEH are also reporting that the ages of patients requiring kidney treatment are getting younger.
The hospital is also reporting successes with its kidney transplants, with nine being conducted between 1991 and 1996, and the first laparoscopic one being done in February this year.
However, organisers of World Kidney Day are urging people to cut out the things they know are not healthy, pay attention to family history, exercise and eat in moderation.
They are advocating for people around the world to keep fit and active, maintain regular control of their blood sugar levels, monitor blood pressure, eat healthy and keep weight in check, maintain a healthy fluid intake, avoid smoking and taking over-the-counter pills.