Help for heart

SOME people have the money to fix medical problems with their hearts via surgery.

But there are others who are unable to come up with the full cost of treatment.

However, there is good news for those patients who may not be able to afford the full cost of open heart surgeries in Fiji.

Sahyadri Specialty Pacific Hospitals Ltd (Fiji), which is bringing a team from India to conduct open heart surgeries, said it was working with some donors in New Zealand for some financial help for needy Fijian patients.

“Previously, such funding from donors especially in New Zealand benefitted Fiji patients,” said SSPHL Fiji director Professor Manu Munibhargav.

“Patients should come forward and take advantage of the surgeries that will be performed at Colonial War Memorial Hospital in Suva.”

Prof Munibhargav said angiograms would be held for a week from November 7.

He said a patient was diagnosed for suitable medical treatment such as angioplasty or open heart surgery or medical management after the angiogram.

He also said Fiji had the lowest price structure for performing angiograms.

“The open heart surgery team will arrive in Fiji on November 19 and the surgeries will be from November 21 to December 2.

“Patients should contact the Ministry of Health and Medical Services for the compliance of formalities.

“They need a referral from a doctor and/or hospital for the angiograms.”

Prof Munibhargav said the ministry had fixed the open heart surgery fee structure from $F25,000 to $F31,500 for Fiji citizens, insurance patients and international patients.

He said the fee structure was the most competitive in comparison with many countries.

“The Government has fixed a package and it is most convenient for the patients for managing their finances.

“For example, if the patient stays a day or two more in the intensive care unit or in the ward, he/she does not have to pay an additional amount.

“In other parts of the world, patients are required to pay additional amount for their extra stay.”

Prof Munibhargav said Pacific Island countries were enquiring about the open heart surgeries that would be performed in Fiji.

SSPHL Fiji official Dr Netra Vishwakarma said all logistics such as pharmaceuticals, consumables and disposables were being arranged for the surgeries.

Dr Chandrashekhar Kulkarni, a senior cardiac surgeon, will lead the open heart surgery team.

SSPHL Fiji is fully-owned by New Zealand citizens and was registered in Fiji in 2012.

It has a joint venture agreement with the ministry to perform heart surgeries, neuro surgeries and joint replacements in Fiji.

Since 2012, it has conducted surgeries in Fiji with the assistance of specialist doctors from India.

SSPHL Fiji hopes to conduct 40 open heart surgeries next month and it is expecting some patients from some Pacific Island countries.

People can enquire about the heart surgeries through pacifichealth2000@gmail.com.

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