MORE kidney donors are expected as the Davao Doctors Hospital (DDH) become the first privately-owned hospital to get accreditation to perform kidney transplants.
The team of nephrologists and urologists of DDH conducted the kidney transplant lay forum and orientation Friday, December 14, where head of kidney transplant team doctor Clarissa Arsolon reported that thousands of Filipinos die every year due to organ failure.
Arsolon said that kidney failure can be caused by long standing diseases such as diabetes, hypertension, among others, which can lead to end-stage renal disease (ESRD).
She also said that they can assure the kidney donors and recipients that the operation is much safer and more affordable now that Philippine Health Insurance Corporation (Philhealth) committed for sponsorship through the kidney transplant Z package benefits.
DDH medical director and nephrologist doctor Noel Villanueva explained that the package benefits of Philhealth will help lessen transplant operation cost from the average of P1.5 million to P600,000 including follow-up monitoring of donors for three years.
“This new program will be able to help more kidney patients. In fact, we already have seven lined-up recipients,” Villanueva said, adding that they will intensify information education campaign (IEC) so that aside from encouraging more donors, they will be able to erase misconceptions about kidney transplant.
“I would like to invite all kidney patients and their relatives to attend forums on kidney transplant so that they will know the benefits of the procedure,” he said.
Meanwhile, head of urology section doctor Oscar Escudero reminded the public that administrative order (AO) 2008-0004 states that kidney trade is strictly prohibited and that kidney donation should be voluntary.
“We want to assure that kidney transplant is a much better approach than hemodialysis or peritoneal dialysis. In terms of survival, in terms of cost, mas makakatipid sila [and] in terms of complications, mas nali-lessen,” Escudero said.