By Joe-Chintha Garises
KEETMANSHOOP, Aug. 3 — Dr Glanda Kalunga feels the need to bring the Kidney Dialysis Specialist Centre not only to bring physical healing closer to her patients but also to allow families to be together during these difficult times.
“It’s not only a physical illness it’s also emotional and physicological because it impacts on the lifestyle, but that’s also why its good to have a centre like this in the regions, so you have the family support, you have the community’s support,” she explained.
When detected early enough the intervention can save lives. “It’s quite prevalent because the risk factors of getting kidney failure are common among black people,” she said.
Kalunga encouraged members of the public to get screened for kidney diseases on a regular basis.
“When you are screened you know what to avoid, what is best for you, and how to prolong what is left on your kidney function with your care provider even if the disease has progressed to needing dialysis.
“It’s all done in a planned way so the patient does not crash land into the hospital in a coma or very sick,” she said.
Kalunga said complications are more on the hearts and other organs and increase the risk for blood clotting, and stroke when people don’t get any intervention.
“We want to prevent those complications which might have a bearing on life after that,” Kalunga said.
She said people should not fear as adjusting to the disease is just a different type of lifestyle.
She said interaction with her patients had driven Dr Kalunga to decentralise the centre.
Kalunga said missing dialysis sessions due to lack of transport could bring complications to the patient’s health treatment plan.
“I always tell patients that this is a two-way street I give you treatment but you also have to commit to coming for sessions but sometimes they can’t make it and they end up with complications and then you have to deal with those complications” she added.
“If you are going to provide a full service to the patients then you also must try to meet the patients halfway on how to ease the burden on the patients,” Kalunga stated.
“So to provide an excellent service you need to go where the community is only then will you really make a difference,” Kalunga said.