Nephrology in Sudan aided by ISN collaboration
This blog post is provided by Elwaleed Elhassan from Wayne State University School of Medicine and Secretary General of the Sundanese American Medical Association (SAMA).
Sudan is the third largest country in Africa, with a population of about 30 million. There is no national renal registry but end-stage renal disease (ESRD) is estimated to affect 5,400 new cases per year.
The first renal unit was established at the Khartoum Hospital in 1967 where dialysis was introduced. The first kidney transplant was performed there too in 1976.
As of December 2015, the total number of patients on regular hemodialysis and Continuous Ambulatory Peritoneal Dialysis were 8,990 and 100, respectively, while 199 transplants were performed in 2015.
Although the cost of renal replacement therapy is mainly borne by the federal government, it is far from enough to address the growing number of ESRD patients. Trained staff and dialysis machines are insufficient and there is a severe brain drain.
The ISN had previously supported Sudanese renal fellows but was subsequently limited because of the economic embargo on Sudan by the USA. Faced with this situation, the Sudanese American Medical Association (sama-sd.org) stepped in to facilitate the ISN Programs in a cost-sharing model along with its local partners, the Sudanese Nephrology Society (SNS) and Sadagaat Charity Organization.
Multiple activities were convened including the Renal Transplantation and Pathology Workshop (2014) and the 1st International Dialysis Conference (2015) with ISN experts from the USA and the UK.
Furthermore, the ISN endorsed the Annual Renal Review and Update Course which is delivered by Sudanese nephrologists who trained and worked abroad.
In March 2016, because of ISN’s concerted effort with the authorities, ISN received temporary exemption to support Sudan. Endeavors by SAMA and SNS are in progress to best use the ISN programs and further renal education and care in the Sudan. Moreover, Sudan can be used as a training site by the 0by25 ISN initiative given its extended expertise in using peritoneal dialysis to treat AKI.
Read more about ISN activities in this region: SAMA Renal Review & Update Course, 2016