By James Nyaigoti and Erick Ziribagwa.
The Nairobi West Hospital has launched the first Bone Marrow Transplant Unit in Kenya.
The Bone Marrow Transplant will provide a broad range of integrated and patient-centric services for the diagnosis and management of all kinds of blood disorders in adults and children, including cancers of the blood.
Speaking during the launch, Professor Andrew Kanyi Gachii, Chief Medical Director at The Nairobi West Hospital explains the importance of access to quality, affordable specialised healthcare in Kenya has been a major pain point for most patients who have to travel abroad for advanced medical procedures like a bone marrow transplant.
According to him, an effective bone marrow transplant unit backed by world leading specialists could make Kenya a medical tourism destination.
“The Bone Marrow Transplant Unit is an integral part of The Nairobi West Hospital, one of Kenya’s leading Level 6B multidisciplinary hospitals. The hospital aims to provide easy access to bone marrow transplants as a possible cure for patients with complex blood disorders. Our dedicated and internationally recognised transplant specialists embrace the values of innovation, collaboration, confidentiality, empathy, integrity, and focus on providing comprehensive care to all patients. This is also an aim to be the leading BMT unit not only in East Africa, but across Africa.” Said Professor Andrew Kanyi Gachii, Chief Medical Director at The Nairobi West Hospital.
Dr. Guarav Dixit, Head of the Bone Marrow Transplant Unit at The Nairobi West Hospital notes that “In some instances, BMT offers the only hope of cure in treating blood cancers like Acute Myeloid Leukaemia (AML) and Acute Lymphocytic Leukaemia (ALL), that would be otherwise be difficult to treat with conventional chemotherapy alone. It is usually a safe procedure for patients with sickle cell disease , if done at a young age. Other emerging indications that can be treated with BMT include Multiple Sclerosis and Paediatric immunodeficiencies. It is important to note that this therapy is evidence-based across the globe, and now readily available in Kenya to all who may need it in a world class facility that can rival many in the west.”
Dr. Kibet Shikuku, Chief Consulting Pathologist for The Nairobi West Hospital, further expounds that “The cancer burden is rising globally, exerting significant strain on populations and health systems at all income levels. Being diagnosed with blood cancer can bring fear, frustration and uncertainty. When detected and treated early however, blood cancer can be treated successfully. We are fortunate to have local healthcare providers like The Nairobi West Hospital which offers an effective and holistic treatment plan for patients.”