MOH News

MOH Observes World Kidney Day
11 March 2021

Together with all countries around the world, the Saudi Ministry of Health (MOH) observed the World Kidney Day on Thursday on the 11th of March, held this year under the theme: “Living Well with Kidney Disease.” Kidney disease is one of the main causes of death worldwide. Approximately 850 million people around the world suffer from kidney failure for various reasons; chronic kidney failure causes at least 2.4 million deaths annually. Prevention is the first treatment for kidney disease. Therefore, MOH exerts endless efforts to raise awareness of the significance of a healthy lifestyle, to develop healthy habits, and to activate early examination to prevent kidney disease.  

In this regard, the Ministry recommends following the golden rules to protect kidneys; by keeping fit by exercising regularly for at least 150 minutes a week, taking appropriate fluid intake on a daily basis of two liters, eating healthy diet, vegetables and fruits on a daily basis, reducing salt, sugar and soda intake, and maintaining ideal weight (ideal body mass is less than 25). The golden rules also include periodical check of blood pressure (normal blood pressure is 120/80), and blood sugar level check for non-diabetic persons at least annually. 

In addition, smoking should be avoided, as it increases the deposition of oxidants that harm kidneys, causes blockage of the renal arteries, and increases the risk of kidney cancer. Moreover, Kidney failure causing factors should be avoided, including excessive use of pain killers, common drugs, and muscle-building protein products. Annual kidney function check is also recommended if you have one or more of the ‘high risk’ factors, such as hypertension, diabetes, obesity, genetic factor and family history of kidney disease.

Kidney patients are more vulnerable to coronavirus complications. Therefore, MOH recommends taking the coronavirus vaccine, in addition to reinforcing prevention and early detection. MOH is keen to provide appropriate treatment for patients with renal insufficiency. About 13,641 kidneys were transplanted from 1979 until 2019. Kidney transplantation is the ideal solution for kidney failure patients; however, there are more than 21,000 patients on the waiting list due to the scarcity of organs.

It is worth mentioning that MOH carried out 2,184,000 dialysis sessions last year in 219 dialysis centers. During the same period, MOH launched Prince Abdul Majeed Dialysis Centre in Jeddah at a maximum capacity of 168 patients, 42 of whom were received as a first phase. MOH also developed the renal care services in Assir Health Affairs General Directorate in terms of developing and expanding the Renal Unit at the Long-Term Care Hospital (Ar-Ri’ayah Al-Madidah) in Khamis Mushait to include 15 hemodialysis chairs rather than 3, which increased capacity from 12 to 60 patients. In addition, the Renal Unit at A Rafidah General Hospital was launched at a capacity of 3 dialysis chairs and 12 patients. Besides, the construction of the Renal Center at Muhayil Assir was finished at a capacity of 20 dialysis chairs and 80 patients at the maximum. In addition to that, King Fahad Center for Kidney at King Saud Medical City witnessed 20% capacity increase (from 240 to 300 patients) during the fourth quarter of 2020.   

Additionally, and for the first time in MOH, the home dialysis service has been activated in Taif. The services provided to patients via Kllana Initiative in the Northern Borders have also been developed. In the same context, transportation services have been provided to high priority dialysis patients, while therapeutic environment has been developed for the benefit of patients. 

During the coronavirus pandemic, MOH also succeeded in providing a number of services to those in need. For example, 11 regions and health clusters were supported with mobile hemodialysis devices to perform 5168 dialysis sessions via 11 devices in cooperation with the Health Endowment Fund. Such dialysis devices and sessions were also utilized in coronavirus isolation hospitals with no available dialysis service. MOH has also supported the Eastern Province with 11 mobile dialysis machines to perform 5000 dialysis sessions. 

Last Update : 15 March 2021 05:37 AM
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