Kidney patients at the Malindi Sub County Hospital are crying for help following the collapse of the health facility’s renal unit.
The more than 40 are staring at death as only one out of the five dialysis machines is working, forcing them to stay for long without the life-saving machines.
Speaking to journalists in Malindi town Monday, five representatives of the patients said many of their counterparts had died after failing to get the service and called upon the Kilifi County Government to urgently address the matter and save their lives.
Mr. Stephen Angore, who said he has depended on the dialysis machines since 2016, said the patients’ cries had fallen on deaf ears and asked Governor Gideon Mung’aro to personally intervene and save the situation.
“These machines are actually our kidneys. Without them we have no life. We urge Governor Gideon Mung’aro to personally intervene and fix them for us to continue living,” Mr. Angore told journalists in Malindi town.
He said each patients is expected to undergo dialysis of their kidneys twice a week, but since the machines broke down in October last year, many have been missing their sessions while others have been forced to seek the service at a private hospital while some patients had died.
Zilpa Wanje from Magarini Sub County said the hospital management had referred the patients to the Kilifi County Referral Hospital for the service, but noted that many cannot afford the transport costs given that they have to attend two sessions each week.
“The other hospital that can help using Kilifi, but if one does not have the fare to travel to Kilifi, one has nothing else to do but to wait for death,” a distraught Ms Wanje said.
Shaban Changawa Baya, who has a kidney patient said patients and their relatives have tried to seek help from the hospital administration to no avail as nobody seems to know exactly what is going on.
“Even the renal nurses at the hospital do not know what to do. One of the renal nurses who took pictures of the renal unit and posted them in their professional group was transferred to another health facility that does not have a renal unit,” he claimed.
Contacted for comment, Kilifi County Health Chief Officer David Mulewa confirmed that the dialysis machines at the hospital were dysfunctional and told those seeking the service to do so at the Kilifi County Referral Hospital.
He said the county government would soon renovate the building housing the renal unit at the Malindi hospital and procure new machines as the current ones were obsolete.
“It is true that the machines at the hospital are faulty. In fact, the building housing the renal unit is not fit for that purpose and we want to bring it down and build a new one before we fix new machines,” the Chief Officer said over the phone.
Governor Gideon Mung’aro visited the facility recently to launch various facilities that his administration had renovated, where he announced that his government would soon acquire a machine that will be used to treat the wounds of diabetic patients so their limbs may not have to be amputated.