By: Foday Manneh
A UK-based Gambian, the founder of the Ida Bass Kidney Foundation, Sailey Jallow-Fladsrud, has appealed to The Gambia government to collaborate with her to construct a special center to improve dialysis in the country.
According to the philanthropist, she has tried several times during the former and current regimes to construct dialysis, otherwise called “renal” centers for the Gambia, but all efforts proved fruitless.
“After those failures, my morale has been very low about the Gambia. However, I will be happy to come back and support with the required equipment and training if the Government is ready to commit to improving kidney care services in the Gambia,” Sailey Jallow told TAT.
Subsequently, in 2021, Sailey established a dialysis center. But this time, in Senegal, where she felt welcomed. The center is called “Revival Centre D’Hémodialyse” in Pointe E, Dakar, and is now fully operational with 23 beds.
Sailey drew her passion and dedication to fight against kidney problems after losing her mother, whom she named her foundation after, Ida Bass, to a life-threatening sickness.
“It was mainly my Mum, Ida Bass. When she got ill, I did not know anything about kidney failure until I came to the Gambia at the end of 2012; then she was diagnosed and started her dialysis in May 2013,” she said.
“During that time, when I entered the old dialysis center, it was small and under-equipped. I could not believe it. Then I started to think about what can I do to address this, so I started the foundation,” Sailey added.
The passionate lady, who was subjected to blows, is still persistent in helping the people of her home country by constructing a 30-bed special dialysis center in Kanifing and 20 beds center within Farafenni and Bansang general hospitals, respectively.
“We could have started with even ten beds as well because we have our partners from the UK who want to support us,”
“Besides providing dialysis, we will have a nutritionist to ensure the patients have the right diet and fluid management plan. We also plan to have a lab to do all our blood tests on-site to ensure that the right dialysis treatment is prescribed,” she promised.
Sailey’s call could not come at a better time as the Gambia’s major referral hospital, EFSTH in Banjul, has been recently hit by a breakdown of dialysis equipment leading to some avoidable deaths of patients.