2,300 M'sians suffer from renal failure yearly

PETALING JAYA: A total 2,300 Malaysians are diagnosed as suffering from kidney failure every year, adding to the 10,000 people already receiving treatment for the ailment.

Health Minister Datuk Chua Jui Meng said yesterday that to cope with the increasing number of patients, the government intended to equip all its 120 hospitals with haemodialysis machines by end of the decade to add to the 102 haemodialysis centres currently in operation.

"Out of these 102 centres presently in operation, the government runs 47 centres while the rest are being operated by non-governmental organisations and in total we are treating 1,064 patients out of the 10,000 patients.

The rest are being treated in private medical centres," he told reporters after flagging off the Larian Penyayang, here, yesterday.

The run was organised by INS Holdings Bhd, which was also accorded the Malaysian Book of Records recognition for being the largest wheatgrass tea producer in the country at the same function.

The run was to raise funds to buy haemodialysis machines for kidney patients. Chua said that RM4 million of the RM10 million allocated to assist kidney patients this year had been disbursed with each patient being subsidised RM50 per treatment since April.

Each treatment costs RM50 to RM150.  Chua said the government spent about RM700,000 a month just to pay for treatment of these kidney failure patients.

On the government's plans to equip all its 120 hospitals with haemodialysis machines, he said this would take some time as there was a limited number of trained personnel to use the delicate equipment. - Bernama