Bengaluru, March 9, 2017: The world celebrates the second Thursday of March as World Kidney Day and this year it falls on March 9th. Kidney diseases are silent killers, as they don’t have any obvious symptoms till it reaches a severe stage by which time it is difficult to treat. The incidence of Acute or Chronic Kidney Diseases (CKD) is on the rise in India owing to life style changes with about 10% of the Indian population suffering from kidney diseases. There is also the misconception that these diseases affect only the elderly while, in truth, a large number of children are also at risk.
One of the major road blocks in treating CKD is the affordability and availability of treatment. The cost of treatment that includes haemodialysis and lack of insurance coverage makes treatment highly prohibitive for many. The health cost of treating a patient on HD (dialysis + erythropoietin + dietary supplements + medications) in India is around INR 9,000 to 12,000 per month in subsidised dialysis units and between INR 20,000 and 30,000 in private hospitals in cities and metros. 70% of those who start treatment stop within 3 months owing to recurring costs month on month and die. Dialysis machines used in India are primarily procured from Germany or Japan and the minimum price of a unit is around Rs 5.5 lakhs. But companies like Browndove, a Bengaluru based renal healthcare company, is exploring lower cost alternatives to make dialysis more accessible and affordable. Also, Browndoves’ dedicated renal care devices manufacturing facility in Bengaluru with its in house R & D is working on reducing the overall cost of renal care treatment in India.
The other issue is availability - in India, only one out of 10 has access to treatment, dialysis or kidney transplant. Currently, there are only about 1,800 nephrologists in India for the entire population (about 1.3 for every million Indians). Similarly, the number of trained dialysis technicians and nurses is inadequate. The mismatch in supply and demand is further aggravated by unequal distribution in nephrology services, which is concentrated in cities and metros while the majority of the population is in smaller towns and rural areas. Estimates put the number of patients on dialysis in India currently at about 120,000 and demand for dialysis is growing at 31% yearly.
Awareness about the seriousness of kidney disease and kidney failure is far less than that for cancer and heart attack. This lack of awareness keeps people from taking preventive steps and seeking timely treatment for kidney disease. For early detection, most nephrologists recommend routine urine test and blood pressure examination, especially if there are signs of the individual being in the high risk population. Early referral to nephrologists, appropriate treatment of hypertension, lifestyle modification with reduction in salt intake, physical exercise, not smoking, keeping blood sugar levels under control will help stop kidney disease going into an advanced stage.
About Browndove: Incorporated in the year 2000, headquartered at Bengaluru and having an all India presence, Browndove is the first company having a dedicated world class dialysis devices manufacturing facility and is totally focused on offering innovative products and services. Browndove has achieved a harmonious balance between quality standards, innovative solutions and affordability giving a reasonable cost access to premium class products in the renal care segment. http://www.browndove.com/