National Kidney Foundation warns of rapidly rising renal failure cases, urges more to opt for dialysis at home

National Kidney Foundation warns of rapidly rising renal failure cases, urges more to opt for dialysis at home

SINGAPORE: The National Kidney Basis (NKF) has cautioned of a “kidney tsunami” with the number of renal failure cases within Singapore rising at a rate that will make it hard for that healthcare system to manage.

Six people are now diagnosed every single day, a three-fold enhance from two decades ago.

The NKF, which usually cares for a majority of dialysis patients in the nation, treats 600 new patients each year. NKF currently has 41 centres, but with kidney failure cases increasing more quickly because of ageing and diabetes, approximately five additional centres need to be constructed every year.

NKF will get about 100 new dialysis applications a month, its chief executive officer Tim Oei told CNA.

“That is of grave concern that we find must be addressed and can’t keep on giving space, neither may the hospitals manage, ” he mentioned.

Haemodialysis, which NKF provides, has to be carried out at a centre with a nurse and needs to be done thrice per week, four hours every time, he said.


Singapore cannot fully rely on haemodialysis, said Mr Oei.  

Whilst prevention of renal failure is important as being a long-term goal within easing the load, in the short term, more support could be given in the community just for peritoneal dialysis which can be done at home, he said.

NKF is aiming to get more kidney dialysis patients on peritoneal dialysis, a change the Government has also required.

Health Ressortchef (umgangssprachlich) Ong Ye Kung said in a speech in August this year that his ministry is pushing for any peritoneal dialysis-preferred approach for patients who are eligible for this treatment option.

The aim would be to have 30 per cent of new dialysis individuals to opt for peritoneal dialysis by 2025, up from the present rate of 20 per cent, he mentioned.

In peritoneal dialysis, an unique sterile fluid can be introduced into the stomach through a permanent tube that is placed in the particular peritoneal cavity – the space within the belly that contains the intestinal tract, the stomach and the liver. The liquid circulates through the belly to draw pollutants which are then exhausted from the body.

“Peritoneal dialysis can be done in your own home. That allows patients a lot more flexibility in terms of meeting their lifestyle as well as gives them flexibility to make other preparations be it work or home, ” he said.

Currently, exercising is provided within hospitals, but NKF wants to support peritoneal dialysis in the community environment, he added.