Attitudinal change key for successful kidney transplantation

By
Morkporkpor Anku, GNA
    

Accra, Sept. 9, GNA
– Dr Vincent Ganu, Public Health Physician at the Korle Bu Teaching hospital,
has said attitudinal change is necessary for successful kidney transplant
programme in sub-Saharan countries.

He said the region
is marked by deep seated traditional, cultural and religious belief systems.

Dr Ganu was speaking
in Accra, during a presentation at the opening of a two-day Health Conference,
organised by Lancaster University Ghana on the topic: “Kidney transplantation
in Sub-Saharan Africa-is the public ready?” 

The conference on
the theme: “Current and Future Challenges for Medical Management in West
Africa,” is to provide a platform for exchange of ideas, insights,
experiences and research findings among health academics, industry and policy
makers in Ghana.

He said millions die
annually from untreated kidney failure due to lack of access to affordable
treatment and over two million people worldwide receive treatment with dialysis.

He said a
preliminary research conducted in five communities in Great Accra with 100
consenting adult participants per community revealed that 64 per cent were
willing to donate to strangers  with as
many as 71 per cent willing to donate after death.

Dr Ganu said that
the study also found out that a majority of Ghanaians have positive attitudes
towards kidney transplantation, and less than 50 per cent were willing to
donate a kidney.

He said those
refusing to donate attributed this to poor health status, loss of body part,
religious beliefs and cultural practices, as well as, mistrust of health
professionals.

He said it is time
to start harnessing the ideas and resources to possibly institute a kidney
transplantation programme in Ghana.

“This is cheaper at
the long run,” he added.

Professor John
Grainger, Provost of Lancaster University, Ghana said the country is now the
home of the University and it is committed to offer the highest quality
education.

He said conference
was to bring together leading academics, policy makers, clinicians,
practitioners and students from the UK and West Africa, with the view to assess
current and future challenges for medical management in West Africa.

He said the event
would mark a major transition for the University and its students, since
management would also be moving towards the completion of their new campus
building with addition of health science, engineering and other science
programmes.

He said currently
Lancaster University is providing 18 months health management programme for 24
hospitals CEOs in Gauteng.

GNA

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