One of the first patients to be treated at the Doobay Renal Centre and benefit from the low cost dialysis center is Golden Grove, East Coast Demerara pastor William Harper.
Harper who has been on dialysis since September 2010 is expected to commence treatment at the centre today. Harper has not been dialyzed for the past three weeks because of finances.
This according to the man is nothing short of a miracle because persons who are on dialysis are dying and he hasn’t taken his treatment for three weeks and is still alive.
On Thursday when the centre was opened, Harper and his wife were very excited at this new venture.
Harper, who was once the pastor of the ‘Fruits of the Cross’ Church but had to give up preaching, says that the new centre comes at a time when his family is faced with a major financial burden.
Harper told Kaieteur News that he was paying up to $36,000 per treatment. With the help of his family and church members, he was able to make all the payments for his dialysis.
The man said that since he started dialysis he has not been able to do the things he was once able to.
“I could walk down the steps good…but it’s difficult for me to go up..”
Harper said that he is not eligible for a kidney transplant since his kidneys are not fully damaged.
The Doobay Renal Centre, which is located at Annandale, East Coast Demerara, officially opened its doors last week.
The centre is aimed at bringing the dialysis treatment at a cost which most Guyanese could afford.
Dr Surendra Persaud, who is a registered surgeon and one of the partners in this new venture, had told Kaieteur News that he was extremely pleased that this dream is finally becoming a reality.
He said that the centre is a registered ‘not for profit’ body which is working in collaboration with the Government of Guyana, the Ministry of Health and with major support from Canada-based Guyanese.
Dr Persaud said that with the help of Dr. Mahendra Doobay, who has worked with the Georgetown Public Hospital Corporation and who is a Cardiovascular Surgeon in Canada, they all sought to realize the dream.
He said that Doobay has worked assiduously with Vic Oditt to make it a reality.
Help was given by two Canada-based universities, and from Canada-based Guyanese.
Kaieteur News was told that almost everything at the centre which includes machines was donated.
Persaud disclosed that the centre has also donated three machines to the Georgetown Public Hospital and is working to donate the water system.
He explained that Georgetown would be the primary center, taking care of only the acute patients.
Because of the location of that centre, Dr Persaud said that emergency cases cannot be brought there.
The Doobay centre according to Dr Persaud would only take care of the chronic patients.
An on-call physician from the Georgetown Public Hospital, according to Dr Persaud would be stationed at the center. The treatment per patient per session would cost some $15,000. It was explained that even if persons do not have that full price, they would not be turned away.
Retired nurse Canada-based Jamaican Louisa McKenzie, was flown in to train nurses from Guyana.
To date the woman said that she has trained 14 nurses, with four having knowledge of Hemodialysis.
However she said that the few who do not have the working knowledge about Hemodialysis have been progressing well.
Meanwhile, Minister of Health Leslie Ramsammy has stated that a dialysis center at the Georgetown Hospital is expected to open sometime this week.
Dr Ramsammy had stated that Government had spent some $10M for the support of people getting dialysis treatment, last year.
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