Vietnam has over 5 mln kidney failure patients: media

Publish: 2:07 PM, May 28, 2018 | Update: 2:07:PM, May 28, 2018

HANOI – Vietnam, with a population of some 95 million, currently has more than 5 million kidney failure sufferers, local media reported on Thursday.

Those who suffer from serious kidney failure have to either undergo dialysis three times a week, or have their kidneys transplanted. However, Vietnam faces serious shortages of kidneys for transplantation, online newspaper VnExpress reported.

Costs for a kidney transplant in Vietnam currently stand at 200-300 million Vietnamese dong (8,800-13,200 U.S. dollars), much lower than those for dialysis kidney patients have to cover till the rest of their life.

Sources of kidney transplant come from brain-dead people and alive donors, local doctors said, adding that Vietnam bans all forms of human organ sales.

However, some human organ trafficking rings have made complicated arrangements and used fake documents to disguise kidney sales as voluntary donations, local police said.

Criminals often pay a kidney seller, mostly poor people, 120-200 million Vietnamese dong (5,300-8,800 U.S. dollars), and charge a buyer 400-900 million Vietnamese dong (17,600-39,600 U.S. dollars) for the kidney. Kidney sales have tended to increase recently, lieutenant colonel Khong Ngoc Oanh from the General Department of Police under the Vietnamese Ministry of Public Security, said, noting that in 2014, local police busted a kidney trafficking ring which operated near major hospitals in Hanoi capital and central Hue city.