Great care for little kidneys. Everywhere.
June 26, 2022
Haiti is the poorest country in the western hemisphere and healthcare is a major challenge. It is vital that children dealing with kidney issues receive proper care and three organizations are collaborating to raise money for medical costs and secure donated equipment & supplies to treat children with kidney disease at Haiti hospitals. Political instability, the socio-economic conditions, gang related insecurity, rising food insecurity and malnutrition are significant issues for Haiti. And then there is COVID-19.
These organizations have joined together to support treating children suffering from kidney disease in Haiti.
One out of five children in kidney failure receive dialysis treatment and the mortality in care of acute kidney injury is around 40% because of comorbidities and absence of dialysis. “We are working to ensure that children dealing with kidney issues receive proper care. The situation has had a devastating impact on vulnerable children with end-stage renal disease a death sentence.” said Dr. Judith Exantus (pictured left), pediatric nephrologist and professor of Pediatrics based in Porta-au-Prince. Dr. Exantus is collaborating with the organizations to ensure the objectives are fulfilled.
“Our goal is to provide interim support while the local organizations build their infrastructure to serve the needs of these children. 750 million people worldwide are affected by kidney disease with too many of them children in Haiti and other developing countries. We must help the Haitian physicians provide proper care.” said Dr. Melvin Bonilla-Félix, Professor and Chair, Department of Pediatrics University of Puerto Rico who serves as the volunteer president of ALANEPE.
According to published reports, many Haitian children with kidney failure die without treatment. Managing pediatric kidney failure is incredibly challenging for health workers, patients, and parents. Peritoneal Dialysis commonly used to treat children with kidney failure is not available in Haiti and Hemodialysis is not readily available for all children. There is inequity between adults and children, between patients regarding where they live and due to their socioeconomically status. Transplant is a solution in many countries but not in Haiti.
“Haiti has many problems that we are not going to be able to solve, but we need to start with simple things like raising money to make sure that children with urinary tract infections get antibiotics and children suffering from nephrotic syndrome receive prescription prednisone,” Dr. Bonilla-Félix continued. There are kids who need regular dialysis that do not receive this life saving treatment because the family does not have the $20 to pay the cost for each treatment. What happens now to most Haiti’s end-stage kidney disease patients? “They die,” says Dr. Exantus.
The situation in Haiti is chaotic. The years of extreme poverty, corruption, extremely high crime rate, a kidnapping crisis for the past year, including 15 doctors that were kidnapped contribute to the healthcare issues. The participating organizations are engaged in programs which help to improve the lives of children with kidney disease in low resource countries. “When we pull together around a common cause, anything is possible,” said Professor Hui-Kim Yap, IPNA President. The short-term goal is to raise $25,000 and we need your help.
Please consider donating to this especially compelling cause. Contributions are processed via IPNA with 100% of monies received used to pay for approved pediatric nephology services in Haiti. IPNA is a charitable organization and donations are tax deductible to the extent your country of citizenship permits.
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