AN urgent call is being made by the head of a dialysis centre for financial help to treat underprivileged patients.
Western Division Dialysis Centre director Dr Zen Low said people suffering from renal failure had better chances of prolonged survival if they were assisted with funding for the expensive treatment.
"It's unfortunate that people have to lose their lives to something that could be treated," he said.
"Renal failure is not like some cancers which cannot be cured.
"Dialysis is the cure for this disease and yet people are not surviving because they cannot afford the treatment."
Dr Low said if more NGOs and corporate bodies stepped forward to provide funding for these patients, more lives could be saved.
"These patients need constant dialysis but just one session can cost a lot.
"While those that have money can afford it, it's not so good for those who don't have the money to pay for treatment.
"If a single person donated about $1 to an account opened specifically for the dialysis treatment for an underprivileged patient, then that is a start.
"It could go a long way to saving a life."
Efforts have also been made by the Health Ministry to assist renal care patients receive life-saving dialysis in the West.
Earlier this month, the ministry opened a dialysis unit at Lautoka Hospital's Intensive Care Unit while at the same time signing a memorandum of understanding with the Western Dialysis Centre.