Recently, I came across the plight of a 23 year old kidney failure patient, Chiw Ghee Hoong who required constant dialysis. In Malaysia, the patients can seek for subsidized treatment run by MAA- Medicare Kidney Charity Fund. Below is taken from his plight, sent out by MAA to past donors:
I am MAA Medicare’s YOUNGEST patient, and I am NOT proud of it. In fact, I am very, very sad. I am disappointed and life is unfair. Why me? I am only 23 years old….
My name is Chiw Ghee Chong. I grew up only knowing my mother. Till today, I don’t know who my father is. I have no other siblings and had a difficult life since I was young. My mum struggled to make ends meet by doing chores at people’s houses. I stopped school at 14 because I wanted to take care of her. I was determined to give her a better life. She had suffered enough.
I hopped from one job to another trying to make ends meet. All I wanted was to earn money and more money for me and my mum. This year during Chinese New Year I was sick. My hands and feet swelled up and I had no appetite to eat. I lost weight and fainted. At the Teluk Intan district hospital, the doctors confirmed I had kidney failure and the rest as they say is history. Until today, no one knows how my kidneys failed.
Now I have to go for dialysis 3 times a week, 4 hours each session. Time is very important for me because I have to rush off to work after each dialysis treatment.
My mum and I are still struggling. She has moved to Johor Bahru to do some baby sitting while I stay with my uncle and his family as I cannot afford to live on my own. I work at a small 7 room hotel in Langkap, 30km from Teluk Intan. I do odd-jobs. I clean the place, wash toilets, and do the laundry and everything else required. I get paid only RM500 (about USD 146) each month. This is not even enough to pay my dialysis fees! What about my other expenses? How do I live?
One week before my 23rd birthday, I came to know about MAA-Medicare and I asked for help. Seeing my plight they gave me a place quickly and assisted me financially. The doctor and the management team came visit me and have worked out a plan for me so that I can dialyze and go to work. They are bearing some additional cost so I won’t worry and skip my dialysis.
I am 23. If I can suffer from kidney failure without any reason, so can you. I ask that you take good care of your health and have regular medical checks. Don’t forget the other patients like me at the 12 other centers throughout the country. In order for us to carry on living we need dialysis treatment, which is very expensive.
MAA-Medicare is able to assist all of us with all the cost because you have generously supported them throughout the past 15years. Please don’t stop. Your contribution no matter how small will come back to us- the patients. Each year, we know the amount of money which is donated and we see new machines, new chairs, new equipment and we don’t have to pay for blood tests, injections, medications and Doctor’s fees. More and more people like me are helped.
I want to just say ‘THANK YOU’ in advance. I know everyone have commitments, but people like me have to take one day at a time because I don’t know what tomorrow brings. May you and your family be blessed with good health and prosperity for your generous donation.
Do support Medicare or other NGOs around your area who are helping these unfortunate and giving them hope.
MAA Medicare has set up a total of 23 dialysis centers nationwide and truly, because of them, a lot of kidney failure patients were able to go on living. Even so, if I am not mistaken the subsized rate is RM50 per session- if you go for private, it cost about RM200. Sadly, many people like Chiw are not able to afford the ongoing cost of treatment- not to mention the fact that it would be tough for him to work all the time as he would always be suffering from fatigue prior to dialysis.
MAA-MEDICARE Kidney Charity Fund
2nd Floor, Wisma MAA-MEDIcare
No 183, Jalan Ipoh, 51200 Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia