What do you do when you suffer from a life-threatening condition that requires a kidney transplant, and then you get a donor but cannot find money to have the transplant carried out? That is the dilemma of 26-year-old Daniel Okello.
“I have already found a kidney donor and done all the documentation required,” says Okello.
However, he explains that despite finding a donor, he has failed to raise funds for the transplant, air tickets for him, the donor and a caretaker, and money for upkeep while in India, where he is scheduled to undergo the procedure.
According to a referral letter from Mulago hospital, Okello’s family has agreed to pay $17,000 (about Shs42m) for the treatment. But he will need another $30,000 (about Shs75m) for air tickets and upkeep for the duration of 40 days he will spend in India while recovering.
“It is the funding that is still a challenge for me to have my surgical operation performed,” Okello told the Daily Monitor in an interview at Mulago hospital where he was receiving his weekly dialysis session.
Dialysis is a procedure used to filter blood to get rid of harmful waste, extra salt and water from the body, which cannot be done naturally if a person suffers from kidney failure.
Okello has been on dialysis for eight months now.
The procedure costs him Shs120, 000 per week. He is required to undergo two sessions at Shs60, 000 each. An auditor by profession, he says the condition has affected his job since he is unable to go to work every day.
According to an evaluation done by Dr R. Sreedhara, a consultant at Fortis Hospital in India, Okello was found to be suffering from an end-stage renal failure caused by hypertension which requires a kidney transplant.
“He is recommended to undergo dialysis until a successful kidney transplantation and supportive care is done,” the letter reads in part.
Dr Isaac Ezati, the director general of health services in charge of planning at the Ministry of Health, says they have already approved Okello’s referral to Bangalore for the surgery.
He urges the public to make any contribution they can towards Okello’s treatment costs.
According to Dr Ezati, the operation cannot be done at Mulago hospital due to lack of surgical facilities and expertise.
Okello was orphaned at the age of seven, and has been living with his guardian, Mr Arthur Mumanyire.
He says the problem started five years ago with signs of hypertension, constant headaches, over sweating, constant body fatigue and reduced amount of urine excretion.
The family has created a bank account in the names of Daniel Okello for contributions. The account number is 08263270004 in Bank of Africa.
You can also call Okello on O784527533 or Arthur Mumanyire on 0775829991.