Costs of Kidney Dialysis

13/04/2017 16:01

Costs of Kidney Dialysis

07 February 2017

Over the years, Consumer Council has been receiving complaints and concerns from kidney dialysispatients in regards to the high cost of treatment provided to them.

The Council welcomes the Ministry of Health’s thoughts towards reducing the cost of dialysis treatment(FT 6/2/17). The Council also noted that the Ministry of Health is not currently subsidizing the cost ofthe treatment or financially assisting either Kidney Foundation of Fiji or Northern Dialysis Centre in Labasa.

However we cannot help but note the difference in prices charged by the two organizations providingthe same treatment. If Northern Dialysis Center of Labasa can charge $150 per treatment, then howcome the Kidney Foundation of Fiji, charges $250?

Such costs simply means a saving of $300 per week if one is getting 3 treatments per week in Labasawhen compared to same treatment being provided by the Kidney Foundation - a non-profit organization.A patient has to fork out $750 per week in Viti Levu whereas a patient in Vanua Levu pays only $450.

For any kidney patient or their family, it is financially crippling to fork out such large sum of moneyjust to be in good health every week.

We understand that fundraising for Kidney Foundation started in 2008 and they received funding fromthe Indian High Commission, Australian High Commission, the New Zealand High Commission plusother “good Samaritan” from the private sector. Kidney Foundation also receives international patientswho pay 2.6 times more as compared to local patients and yet they are not able to reduce the cost of dialysis.

Since Kidney Foundation of Fiji is a non-profit organization, and over the years funded by donors and good Samaritans, it is high time they informed the public why their cost of treatment is more. Consumersmust understand why the treatment remains costly.

We do commend the work of the two organizations who are providing this important service but KidneyFoundation needs to ensure that the treatment charges are affordable by reducing their overhead costs.