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Camille Villar proposes free dialysis treatment for poor patients in gov’t hospitals

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By Billy Begas

House Deputy Speaker and Las Piñas Rep. Camille Villar has filed a measure seeking to establish dialysis units in government hospitals that will provide free treatments to indigent patients.

In House Bill 3098, Villar said one in every four Filipinos die because of kidney failure.

Villar said in 2020 chronic kidney disease (CKD) is identified as the 10th leading cause of death in the Philippines and kidney failure is a major cause of hospitalization.

She said the trend in having the need to undergo dialysis and kidney treatment is not getting any lower and has increased by around 15% annually over the past decade.

“With the number of citizens affected with kidney diseases that continue to increase annually, together with the high mortality risk posed, the need to capacitate our government hospitals is immediate and significant,” Villar said.

Within two years from the enactment of the proposal, all national, regional, and provincial government hospitals shall be required to establish, operate and maintain a dialysis ward, with complete dialysis machines, equipment, and supplies.

Dialysis treatment of patients who have no means of income or support, as determined by the Social Welfare department, shall be provided free of charge.

A dialysis session usually costs P4,500 and is recommended to be conducted thrice weekly.

Villar said this amount could be considered a huge amount for an average family and potentially hinders patients from availing of regular treatments.