Friday, January 11, 2008

Princess bountiful


Princess bountiful

Kidney patients'expenses slashed by her foundation

Published on January 6, 2008

Watcharapong Settasakkho, a 25-year-old engineer who lives in Kanchanaburi province, was expected to die of chronic kidney disease in the middle of last year but survived by the grace of Her Royal Highness Princess Galyani Vadhana.

"I am very grateful to her for saving my life," he said. "The cost of treatment for this disease is very high, and if she had not helped me I can't imagine how I would have survived."

Watcharapong had been suffering from kidney disease since his last year at Sri Pathum University in Bangkok. When it was found that neither of his kidneys could function any longer he was admitted to Rajvithi Hospital, where he also suffered from depression.

"One doctor suggested I consult the Kidney Foundation of Thailand and ask about a transplant, and I did have the operation," he said

The foundation was established 28 years ago and chaired by the Princess. It was established to help patients with kidney disease, particularly those in the last stages who needed transplants but could not pay.

The cost was Bt2,000 per session, and there were two sessions a week. Most could not afford this. The foundation charged them only Bt500 to Bt1,000.

"I don't know the words to express my deep gratitude for her kindness," he said.

Jiraporn Worathitaporn, 42, was also suffering from chronic kidney disease and received treatment from the foundation.

"I had suffered for seven years. I was treated at a private hospital, but it was so expensive. Then I was advised to go to the foundation for cheaper treatment," she said

Jiraporn has now been receiving peritoneal dialysis at least twice a week from the foundation for seven years.

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