10 March 2022, Apia Samoa. Today is World Kidney Day, and to commemorate it the National Kidney Foundation (NKF) of Samoa is launching a primary care approach to address chronic kidney disease in Samoa.
One hundred and seventy (170) people are currently receiving haemodialysis in Samoa on the islands of Upolu and Savaii, with over 80% of them developing kidney failure from diabetes, hypertension and obesity.
The National Kidney Foundation of Samoa has been providing haemodialysis services to the people of Samoa since 2005 and have observed a rapidly rising demand that is calling for a different sustainable approach
The primary care approach is detailed in a working document titled “Managing Chronic Kidney Disease in Samoa”. The document is a result of a comprehensive research by Samoa’s own Dr Malama Tafunai into Samoa’s kidney failure problems since NKF’s inception in 2005.
It is being launched as part of World Kidney Dat in a ceremony this morning by the honorable Minister of Health, Afioga Valasi Luapitofanua Toogamaga Tafito Selesele.
The document will be presented by Afioga Papali’i Dr Sam Petaia, the chairman of the National Kidney Foundation board of directors, on behalf of NKF.
Chronic Kidney Disease is a non-communicable disease and a public health problem affecting individuals, communities and nations. It is mainly caused by diabetes, high blood pressure and obesity which are all preventable diseases. The success of a primary care approach lies in the development of a robust and comprehensive primary health care system with health care workers trained in primary care and facilities that are accessible to all, both in urban and rural communities. These primary care facilities such as rural health clinics and hospitals must include basic laboratory tests to detect chronic kidney disease and its associated risk factors of diabetes, high blood pressure and obesity early and includes the availability of essential medications to all.
This system must include a culturally appropriate follow-up and referral system to ensure that people with chronic kidney disease are not lost within the system. The launching of the “Managing of Chronic Kidney Disease in Samoa” document will be followed by presentations explaining the document to invited guests at the Ministry of Health conference room at Moto’otua this morning.