Image Source: Bikash Basnet, Facebook

Gangtok, May 31: In an update for kidney patients awaiting transplant and other kidney-related ailments, the Confidential Secretary to the Chief Minister of Sikkim, Bikash Basnet informed through his social media page that 10 dialysis machines are now functional at STNM Hospital and 5 at Namchi District Hospital, with two shifts per day at each.

The kidney filters blood by removing waste and excess fluid from the body. In an event of kidney failure, the organ loses its ability to filter waste and balance fluids. Dialysis is a treatment that filters and purifies the blood using a machine. This helps keep the patient’s fluids and electrolytes in balance when the kidneys can’t do their job. While there are a few treatment options, transplant and dialysis are popular. For patients awaiting a kidney transplant, the latter is necessary.

The announcement of new dialysis units could be because of Sikkim’s recent rise in renal failure cases and also the reports of many Sikkimese queued up in various private hospitals for dialysis. It was also during this COVID-19 lockdown, many news floated on various platforms highlighting the suffering of renal patients in Siliguri due to unavailability of dialysis unit in Sikkim.

It was also informed that the government has plans to start a dialysis unit at Geyzing Hospital, while making sure that all subdivisions are also equipped with the necessary medical equipment for the treatment of kidney patients as informed by the Chief Minister at the high-level cabinet meeting held at Samman Bhawan on May 30. The new dialysis unit is beneficial to the public since it is more reasonable as compared to private hospitals.

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