Kirinyaga residents urged to seek early intervention against non-communicable diseases

Kirinyaga County residents have been urged to seek early intervention to manage non-communicable diseases. In an event held to commemorate World Kidney Day at Kerugoya County Referral Hospital, the County Director for Health and Medical services, Dr. George Karoki, said that early management of non-communicable diseases protects patients from having advanced stages of the diseases.

The director said that Kirinyaga County has been ranked among the leading counties in non-communicable diseases prevalence which when left unattended can turn out to be fatal. He noted that conditions such as kidney failure can be prevented if challenges such as diabetes and high blood pressures were managed in timely manner. He noted that the county government has greatly enhanced the capacity of the public health facilities to enable them carry out routine screening for non-communicable diseases which helps in early detection and intervention. He pointed out that kidney patients in the county have been getting the required care at Kerugoya Hospital’s dialysis unit that was established by the county government five years ago. “The facility which initially had five dialysis machines now has eight machines which enable the hospital to cater for the 36 patients under the dialysis program. The unit is carries out about 280 dialysis sessions per month”, said Dr. Karoki.

The nurse in charge of the county dialysis unit, Rachael Nyaga, observed that renal failure is affecting people across all ages and the facility has handled people as young as 14 years and as old as 90 years. She said that the county government under the leadership of Governor Anne Waiguru has been constantly supplying the dialysis unit with the required equipment and medical supplies to enable its smooth running. She said that before the unit was established, the county used to refer patients to Kenyatta National and Referral Hospital for treatment. Rachael also cautioned residents against poor eating habits and sedentary lifestyles that are the main contributors of non-communicable diseases, also advising them to seek routine health check-ups.

The celebration brought together patients enrolled under the dialysis program as well as a few who have undergone successful kidney transplant. Elaine Muthoni, a 24 years old kidney transplant beneficiary encouraged people to seek early treatment for kidney ailments and encouraged those recommended for transplant to be positive about the procedure since it goes a long way in improving the quality of life of a patient. She underwent the transplant in 2020 after going through dialysis for about one year.

Benson Wachira, a 67 year old man who has been undergoing dialysis at the hospital since 2018 appreciated the services he has been receiving at the hospital and thanked Governor Waiguru for ensuring that the unit is well equipped to serve them. World Kidney Day is aimed at raising awareness of having kidneys and overall health to reduce the occurrence and the impact of kidney disease.

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