Members the profit on medical machines of this capacity is usually recovered by the seller through maintenance and supply of materials needed to efficiently run them.Mulago hospital has many equipment which are either not working efficiently because they are not maintained or calibrated on schedule or are run by technicians or physicians who are not well equipped through training or have never had enough experience to run them.

You just don’t plug a person on a dialysis machine and clean up their blood like you just vacuum dirt from a carpet. The care of a patient on dialysis evolves a team of nurses and physicians, involves several lab draws and monitoring, many hours on machines and you can kill a person on a dialysis machine faster than their failed kidney.

So setting up a dialysis unit needs more preparation than many envision, however it is crucial that the government comes up with a viable plan because this is desperately needed. Lets also remember that many clients that go on dialysis have hope of getting Kidney transplants so those who plan for this kind of center are better of having a transition plan along these lines otherwise it means a life long life on dialysis. So depending on how many patients can be hooked on a machine per day and it takes hours to go through the cycle depending on your markers in blood and probably three or four times a week you figure out how many machines might be needed, obviously not one.

If I take an educated guess it might cost about $4 dollars per treatment in maintenance of the machine, minus cost of the doctors , nurses and other members of the team and cost of labs. If I pick a number out of the blue all those cost included not forgetting electricity cost you might be looking at $15 dollars per treatment (day) in Uganda.

Sometimes you can easily get a car that is cheaper than the cost of its yearly maintenance,insurance and gasoline but usually that’s an old car. But then a new car in combination with a bad or drunk driver or someone who has no licence to drive can easily lose its value as soon as it hits the highway. So I hope who ever does the math factors in all this.

Almost everyone who is trying to address the issue of Uganda’s health care asks the wrong questions. I said before about three years ago on this forum and I repeat my self I would not put a dollar more in this system as it is. Without rebuilding the whole foundation of our Health system all the money you pour in goes to an endless pit and you will never have anything to show.

I keep away from health care discussions that don’t discuss the real solutions, buying a Kidney dialysis machine now is no different from buying a plane when you don’t have enough runway to fly it off unless you have the capacity to modify it.

The roots, how deep they go, how much water they receive will determine the size of the trunk, which will determine the number of branches, which would determine the number of leaves, which would determine how many fruits a tree will have and also determine how many people can enjoy the supply it provides.
Build a strong foundation, and all these machines you are talking about will no longer be fantasies. For those who cant figure where to begin, get all your kids registered for identification cards.

Dr. Edward Kayondo, MD via the UAH forum


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