National Kidney Foundation of Malaysia board member Tai Lung Khoon said that more than half of the over 2,000 people with kidney problems in the country died this year because they could not afford dialysis treatment, which would work out to over 1,000 people. (New Straits Times)
The actual cost of dialysis treatment is RM135 per session while private hospitals charged between RM160 and RM250. A kidney patient must seek dialysis treatment three times a week.
This must be regarded as a Malaysian national scandal and outrage that in a country which boasts of having the tallest twin towers in the world and the most modern and glittering development monuments comparable with the most advanced countries in the West - as well as a government whose guiding motto includes creating a “caring society” - over 1,000 people should die this year simply because they could not afford the dialysis treatment to keep them alive.
The Malaysian Parliament has just passed the 2002 budget of over RM100 billion, and every Barisan Nasional Member of Parliament has been given an annual allocation of RM1 million in each constituency, and yet, the country could not save the lives of over 1,000 Malaysians who could not afford dialysis treatment.
As a start, every Barisan Nasional MP should be required to give top priority to devote their annual development allocation to ensure that there will not be a single Malaysian in their constituency dying because of inability to afford dialysis treatment.
DAP calls for the establishment of a Special Cabinet Committee to ensure that no single Malaysian will die next year of kidney problems because of inability to afford dialysis treatment.
The Special Cabinet Committee to spearhead a special programme, involving joint public-private sector effort, and enlisting the support of all political parties whether government or opposition, NGOs and the civil society, to proclaim and implement the Caring Society Target No. 1 that no single Malaysian will die next year because of inability to afford dialysis treatment.
DAP pledges full support to such a Caring Society Target No. 1 programme and is prepared to mobilise its entire national resources towards such a campaign and objective.