Thursday, June 20, 2024

Government Hospitals Urged To Add Hemodialysis Units As CKD Patients Surge

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Government Hospitals Urged To Add Hemodialysis Units As CKD Patients Surge

2853

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Amid the surge in the number of Filipinos living with chronic kidney disease (CKD), Quezon City 4th District Rep. Marvin Rillo urged public hospitals to avail of additional funding from the Health Facilities Enhancement Program (HFEP).

“We would urge all public hospitals to seek HFEP funding so that they can increase their hemodialysis stations and accommodate more CKD patients,” Rillo, a member of the House Committee on Appropriations, said in a news release on Sunday.

“The HFEP has an allocation of PHP28.5 billion in the 2024 General Appropriations Law, and Congress is providing fresh funding for the program every year,” Rillo said.

He said the HFEP bankrolls the construction, upgrading, or expansion of public healthcare facilities and the procurement of additional hospital or medical equipment.

The country is observing National Kidney Month this June “to raise public awareness of the fatal consequences of renal diseases.”

CKD is among the leading causes of sickness and death in the Philippines.

Patients with CKD undergo hemodialysis treatment up to three times every week, with each session lasting for four hours.

“Public hospitals must guarantee Filipinos living with CKD ready and uninterrupted access to hemodialysis treatment to assure them a superior quality of life,” Rillo said.

Last month, through Rillo’s efforts, the East Avenue Medical Center in Quezon City and Passion Healthcare Philippines Inc. agreed to work together to provide sustained hemodialysis treatment to disadvantaged CKD patients.

Rillo also previously launched free hemodialysis treatment in Barangay UP Campus, through a licensed facility.

Hemodialysis procedure remains the No. 1 treatment package being claimed by Filipinos and their healthcare providers.

In 2023 alone, a total of 3,627,350 hemodialysis procedure claims were filed with state-run Philippine Health Insurance Corp. (PhilHealth), which spent an aggregate of PHP17.4 billion to pay the claims.

The National Kidney and Transplant Institute (NKTI) previously said it is holding consultations with Congress and the Department of Health regarding possible amendments to Republic Act 7170 or the Organ Donation Act and other related policies.

NKTI Public Health Unit head Dr. Maria Angeles Marbella noted an increase of 8,000 hemodialysis patients from 2023, higher than the estimated 2,000 to 3,000 reported in the past years.

NKTI data showed one Filipino develops chronic kidney failure every hour or about 120 Filipinos per million population every year. (PNA)