Residents of Northern and Western provinces who used to travel long distances to seek kidney treatment either in Kigali or elsewhere will no longer do so following the opening of a dialysis centre at Rubavu Hospital last week.
The dialysis centre brought relief to the patients in a region who could only get these services in Kigali or in Huye District.
Other dialysis centres are at the University Teaching Hospital of Kigali (CHUK), King Faisal Hospital Kigali, as well as at University Teaching Hospital of Butare (CHUB) in Huye.
“It was a serious issue; I suffer from kidney complications and I would travel three times a week to Kigali to use the dialysis. Transport and meals alone would cost at least Rwf50,000,” said Christine Dushimirimana.
In medicine, dialysis is a process for removing wastes and excess water from the blood and is used primarily as an artificial replacement for lost kidney function in people with kidney failure.
It may be used for those with an acute disturbance in kidney function (acute kidney injury, previously acute renal failure or progressive but chronically worsening kidney function, a state known as chronic kidney disease stage 5).
The centre was constructed by Gisenyi Hospital in partnership with Africa Healthcare Network.
Dr Patrick Ndimubanzi, the State Minister in charge of Primary Health Care, commended the initiative but took the opportunity to urge Rwandans to take precautionary measures to prevent contracting such lifestyle diseases whose treatment is very costly.
He said sports and avoiding excessive consumption of salts and avoiding sitting for long hours, could be enough to prevent oneself from kidney complications.