Robinah Asaba Byaruhanga would not have guessed what she was headed for when she fell sick. Just like any other human, may be she had expected to check in at a health facility, go to the triage and finally walk out with some medication.
Alas, was not the case, her sudden illness was announcing a bigger problem that herself and family did not foresee- Kidney Failure.
At a hospital in Fort portal, Byaruhanga was told she was having kidney complications and quickly referred to Kampala for urgent treatment. She was brought to Mengo hospital in November and doctors diagnosed she was at high risk of kidney failure.
From Mengo Hospital, Byaruhanga was referred to Nsambya hospital where doctors at Mengo felt she would get better treatment.
However, her situation only got worse until Kidney expert (nephrologist) Dr. Robert Kalyesubula, recommended she is put on dialysis immediately.
As a result, she has been undergoing very costly dialysis sessions weekly at Norvik Hospital Kampala for the past 3 months, which has taken a huge toll on her children who are her care takers both financially and emotionally.
The most recent renal tests conducted on her at Norvik hospital show serum creatinine levels stand at 8.8 milligrams per deciliter of blood which is way above the normal range in females- that is 0.6 – 1.1 milligrams per deciliter of blood.
Initially Dr. Kalyesubula said they thought the kidneys would recuperate after a number of dialysis sessions, but her kidneys were declared completely failed in January, creating the need for an urgent lifesaving kidney transplant that has been arranged in India to save Byaruhanga’s life.
The total cost including; flights, accommodation, surgery and meals for the care taker, donor and patient comes up to 35000 dollars (Shs130 million), an amount Jovia Tuhaise who is Robinah Byaruhanga’s eldest child and her care taker says they don’t have.
As a result, they are seeking contributions from friends and well-wishers to help give their 52-Year-old mother a second chance at life through this life saving surgery.
The family is also organising a car wash to raise more funds at Panamera bar and restaurant next to Kampala Parents School on Saturday, the 6th of April 2019 starting 9:00am at a cost of Shs50,000(minimum) per car but one is free to give more according to Jovia Tuhaise, the lead organiser.
How to contribute
To contribute to Robinah’s surgery you can send mobile money to MTN 0775 460 431 in the names Jovia Tuhaise or AIRTEL 0751 085 905 in the names Kajumba Josephine.
Alternatively, you can deposit your contributions on account number 3201827949 Centenary Bank in the names Josephine Kajumba or account number 9030002486949 Stanbic Bank in the names Jovia Tuhaise.
Who else is at risk?
Uganda continues to struggle with Non Communicable diseases, with over 25 per cent of Ugandans at risk of Kidney diseases, a recent study has revealed.
While the condition continues to bite in, many of those affected present to health facilities late, with limited option of cure with many imprisoned on their hospital beds, since there is no cure yet for Kidney disease.
A quarter of Ugandans above 18 in the country have Kidney disease, this is about 25% of the total population, Dr Robert Kalyesubula who is also the President Uganda Kidney Foundation reveals.
He however adds that many of the people come to hospital when the condition is in its advance stage.
Dr Kalyesubula says that 55% percent of the patients come when the condition is in stage five with very minimal clinical options.
“But even then, very few of the patients who come for medical care can afford the available treatment options. Only 105 of our patients who need dialysis for medication can actually afford it.”