Nepali hospitals can transplant kidneys at low cost: Docs

Kathmandu, February 15:

They say regulations to commence kidney transplant service here are flawed.

Simplification of human organ transplantation related law can help patients here save huge amount of money and donors would not have to be cheated by the brokers, doctors today said.

They said Nepali hospitals can provide kidney transplantation service in just Rs 250,000, if law is simplified. Addressing a programme today, Dr Mahesh Khakurel, director of the TU Teaching Hospital (TUTH), said the TUTH could provide kidney transplantation service at just Rs 250,000 instead of about Rs 1 million, the patients are paying in India, at a press meet organised by Nepal Society of Nephrology and Nepal Association of Urological Surgeons.

Due to the lack of transplantation facilities in Nepal, patients are forced to go to India, paying high cost and they are being cheated by middlemen and brokers, Khakurel said. “If the service is provided in the country itself, people won’t have to approach the brokers to get donors since there would be direct coordination between the hospitals.”

However, Khakurel said as the regulations to commence the transplantation are impracticable, hospitals have not been able to provide the service despite having expertise.

“If only the government cares to look into the issue and amend the flawed regulations, the transplantation service could begin in Nepal.”

The government had formed Organ Transplantation Coordination Committee in 2001 under the Human Organ Transplantation Act, 1998, and was reformed in 2004/05, but it has remained dysfunctional. Though the government gave its nod to the Bir Hospital to transplant kidneys, the service did not start due to the constraints of law.

Dr Rishi Kafle, executive director of National Kidney Centre, said the regulations are too impracticable. The law has stated that if the donor dies within three months after donating kidney, the kidney recipient gets lifer, he said.

There is a practice of taking out the donors’ kidneys sans proper care, said Dr Chop Lal Bhusal, president of Nepal Medical Association.

Delhi cop held for letting off Amit

NEW DELHI: Delhi Police on Friday registered a case against seven of its personnel and held one of them for allegedly accepting bribes in the kidney transplant scam headed by Amit Kumar, who was nabbed last week in Nepal. While assistant sub inspector Ravinder Kumar was nabbed, six others managed to flee. Police sources said the case was registered after Amit Kumar, suspected to have been behind 600 kidney thefts, spilled the beans during his interrogation by CBI sleuths. — HNS