A Nephrologist, Prof. Wale Akinsola, says that renal transplantation programme is available only in eight centres across the country.
Akinsola said this on Tuesday at the Annual General Meeting and Scientific Conference of the Nigerian Association of Nephrologists (NAN).
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the conference has as its theme: “Kidney Disease and Demographics”.
He said: “Renal transplantation programme (living donor organ transplant) was available only in eight centres across the country, but with a grossly limited number of transplants, except in two private renal centres.
“The less than 100 annual renal transplants are about 10 percent of the annual transplantation needs of the nation.
“The major constraints include donor organ availability and huge cost of transplantation, which is about N6 million coupled with inadequate resources.
Akinsola said that given the high number of people with chronic kidney disease in the country, there was the urgent need for equitable and affordable renal care.
“While the magnitude of acute kidney injury is largely unknown, that of chronic kidney disease is staggering with prevalence in local studies of between 18 percent and 25 percent of adult population.
“About 70 percent of this population group resides in the rural under-served areas and only a few can afford the exorbitant cost of maintenance of the hemodialysis or renal transplantation which is available only in city centres.
“There is the urgent need to design a national strategy for an all-inclusive, equitable, accessible and cost-effective renal care in Nigeria in an integrated and well-coordinated primary, secondary and tertiary care systems, ” he said.
The President of the association, Prof. Ifeoma Ulasi, noted that there was a rising prevalence of kidney disease in the country.
“We need to understand the socio-economic factors that drive kidney disease as regards causation, prevention and treatment.
“There is the need to increase awareness and public sensitisation on the causes and prevention of kidney diseases,” she said.
NAN reports that the opening of the conference witnessed the conferment of International Society of Nephrology Pioneer Award to Emeritus Prof. Oladipo Akinkugbe for his outstanding achievements in the field of nephrology.
Akinkugbe, who is a pioneer nephrologist in Nigeria, urged the younger generation of doctors on research in order to find lasting solution to the public health burden of kidney diseases in the country.
According to the association, no fewer than 20 million Nigerians have kidney diseases.