KUALA LUMPUR, March 9 – Chronic kidney disease (CKD) is a growing epidemic and rising global public health concern, with an estimated 850 million people affected worldwide.
As a progressive disease, very often linked to diabetes and hypertension, CKD can lead to kidney failure, also known as end stage kidney disease (ESKD), which requires dialysis or transplantation.
Baxter, a global leader in dialysis care, has launched “Begin Again”, an education campaign to raise awareness of the vital importance of timely treatment, empowering those who have been diagnosed with ESKD with the knowledge they need to move forward with treatment while still living life to the fullest.
In the Asia-Pacific region, the Begin Again campaign will run in nine languages across 10 regions, aiming to reach over 28 million people. As part of the campaign, people wishing to learn more about CKD are encouraged to visit this website, designed to provide comprehensive and objective information on CKD and ESKD treatment options in a way that is easy to understand.
Diabetes is a significant risk factor for developing chronic kidney disease with over 50,000 patients in Malaysia currently undergoing dialysis. By 2040, it is estimated that approximately 100,000 patients would require dialysis.
Urgent action must be taken to address this growing health crisis and ensure those affected by the disease are empowered with the right resources to make informed decisions about treatment options.
Dialysis is the most common form of treatment for CKD patients, and involves the removal of waste and excess fluid from the blood when the kidneys are no longer able to fulfill that function well.
There are two types of dialysis: hemodialysis (HD) and peritoneal dialysis (PD). HD involves using a machine to filter blood outside of the body and is usually done in a hospital or care centre. Meanwhile, PD collects waste from the body by introducing a sterile fluid into the peritoneal cavity through a catheter, and can be done at home and performed by patients themselves or their caregivers.
According to Dr Lily Mushahar, president of the Malaysian Society of Nephrology (MSN), the rate of CKD health screening in Malaysia is still very low as compared to cancer screening.
“To encourage the public to go for CKD health screening, the Malaysian Society of Nephrology (MSN) in collaboration with National Kidney Foundation (NKF) will run a free CKD health screening programme, “Buah Pinggang Anda Ok? Jom Check!”, nationwide,“ Dr Lily said.
“Please perform a blood and urine test to know your kidney health as much better outcomes can be achieved with early screening,” she added.
“Chronic kidney disease affects one in seven Malaysians,” according to Dr Sunita Bavanandan, head of nephrology services, Ministry of Health.
“The disease varies in severity but in its more advanced levels it is associated with increased mortality and morbidity, and much hardship for the people affected and their families. We hope that initiatives such as World Kidney Day will raise awareness of this chronic disease, while the Begin Again campaign with its website and several other public websites are helping to promote health literacy, i.e. the ability of individuals to obtain, process, and understand basic health information and services needed to make appropriate health decisions,“ she said.
“World Kidney Day is an important event for Baxter, as it is an opportunity to educate the public about the disease. In Malaysia we are proud to collaborate closely with the healthcare providers to deliver education and care face to face and via digital tools enabling a wider and a timely access to information by patients and healthcare professionals,” said George Kazzi, general manager of Baxter Malaysia.