IN AN effort to raise awareness on kidney disease and encourage organ donation, the National Kidney Foundation (NKF) of Malaysia has launched an organ donation promotion unit at Sunway Pyramid with the support of Sunway Group.
Located at level CP3 of Sunway Pyramid, the unit is the first of its kind in a shopping centre in Malaysia.
Full-time healthcare professionals from NKF’s public education department will be employed at the unit to provide easily accessible information for organ donation and allow visitors to sign up for organ donation.
The launch was officiated by guest of honour Sunway Group deputy chairman Tan Sri Datuk Seri Razman M. Hashim.
Funds for the unit came from the NKF Charity Dinner organised by Sunway in May last year, which raised RM731,760.
“Sunway Group has long supported and commended NKF in its continued efforts to fight against kidney diseases through preventive education,” said Razman.
“Through the organ donation promotion unit, we hope to do our part towards heightening public awareness on organ donation and improving the quality of life for kidney patients.”
A total of 19,474 people are on the waiting list for a kidney transplant, with the number of kidney failure patients increasing every year.
In comparison, less than 1% of Malaysians have registered as organ donors as of July 2015, pointing to a severe shortage in the gift of life for many end-stage organ failure patients.
Organ transplant is the only long-term solution for many kidney patients in terms of quality of life and cost effectiveness.
End-stage kidney failure patients have to spend their whole lives going for expensive and time exhausting dialysis treatments while waiting for the rare chance of finding an organ donor.
“For many end-stage organ failure patients, organ donation remains their last chance of survival but the limited availability of organ donors and misconceptions around organ donation have made finding a suitable donor difficult,” said NKF vice-chairman Dr Thiruventhiran Thilaganathan.
The organ donation booth is the newest addition to NKF’s continuous efforts to advocate for the early detection and prevention of chronic kidney disease.
Since the organ donation campaign as supported by Sunway Group started in January 2015, NKF has received 1,033 organ pledges from the public.
For details, visit www.nkf.org.my or call 03-7954 9048.