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Ministry of Health moving towards developing National Transplant Policy

Published:Tuesday | August 25, 2015 | 2:07 PM

Minister of Health Dr Fenton Ferguson says the Ministry of Health is moving towards developing a National Transplant Policy as part of efforts to tackle the prevalence of renal disease.

He was speaking yesterday at the donation of a peritoneal dialysis machine and other dialysis supplies from Sagicor to the Kidney Kids Foundation for use at the Dialysis Unit of the University Hospital of the West Indies, Mona, which he said will go a far way towards saving lives.

"Our celebration today is really about saving lives relative to those persons with end-stage renal disease. There is also the question of kidney transplants. It is getting better in terms of cost, as generics are now available. We are moving to develop a National Transplant Policy. We have brought in overseas teams to develop the programme at Cornwall Regional Hospital and we are having discussions on the matter," Ferguson said.

He added that a strategic decision must be taken to develop dialysis services at the Bustamante Hospital for Children. He also indicated that there is need to build the human-resource capacity in paediatric nephrology and paediatric oncology to support these services to children despite the expense involved in training in these areas.

The equipment was purchased from the proceeds of the Sagicor Sigma Corporate Run 2015. Some 24,000 persons participated to raise more than $26 million for the Jamaica Kidney Kids Foundation and the Cornwall Regional Hospital's Neonatal Unit.

The equipment for the Cornwall Regional Hospital's Neonatal Unit has not yet arrived on the island.