Govt hospitals provide silver lining for patients

  • Organ transplatation
  • Experts, however, say challenges remain; stress infrastructure, human resources
- Post Report, Kathmandu

Jul 18, 2017-

With two successful liver transplantations at the Human Organ Transplant Centre (HOTC) and plans afoot to start the services in other major public health facilities, there is a hope for the patients needing organ transplantation, as they can get the surgeries done at government hospitals.

The HOTC recently on July 2 successfully conducted a second liver transplantation. 

Hira Kaji Maharjan underwent the surgery. His daughter Sarita donated the organ. 

Balram Naga, 41, was the first person to undergo liver transplantation surgery at the HOTC in December. 

The HOTC has been providing kidney transplantation services for quite some time, and 315 patients have undergone the surgery in the last four years. Last year alone, 132 kidney transplantation surgeries were performed at the HOTC. 

“We hope to provide liver transplantation services on a regular basis,” said Dr Pukar Chandra Shrestha, executive director of HOTC. 

The Tribhuvan University Teaching Hospital also has announced that it will start liver transplantation services within six months. All the necessary preparations have been completed, according to the hospital administration. 

The TUTH has in the last seven years has conducted 460 successful kidney transplantation services.  

Similarly, as many as 128 patients have undergone kidney transplantation surgeries at Bir Hospital since the services started in 2010. 

The Civil Service Hospital, yet another government health facility, has been providing bone marrow transplantation services and seven persons have undergone the process since 2016.

These services at government health facilities mean patients can undergo these surgeries at a lower cost. 

Liver transplantation surgery can be performed in government hospitals at around Rs 1.5 million. The cost in India and other parts of the world is as high as Rs 10 million. Earlier, patients did not have any other option that to fly to India or abroad for liver transplantation, hence they had to spend a huge amount of money. 

Similarly, the cost of kidney transplantation in Nepal comes around Rs 500,000 while bone marrow transplantation can be done at Rs 450,000.

Despite a silver lining for patients needing transplantation services, there are challenges ahead when it comes to providing sustained services to the needy. 

Experts lay stress on building strong infrastructure and human resources. 

“We should build strong infrastructure and human resources within our institutions so that complex surgeries like liver transplantation can continue without disruption,” says Dr Dibya Singh.

Similarly, there is also a need of awareness among the general public. 

“We are losing organs from brain dead people every day as we have failed to convince people about organ donation,” says Dr Shrestha of the HOTC. 

Published: 18-07-2017 07:38

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