Cancer is one of most difficult diseases to treat in the world and probably the worst disease as well. There are many types of cancers and the celles spread very quickly in the human body from one part to another hence it becomes very difficult to treat in the later stages. If detected earlier, cancer is definitely curable and treatment includes chemotherapy and medicines. When it comes to taking chemotherapy, a patient can take the therapy either at a day care chemotherapy unit or in an outpatient wing of a hospital where the patient is not required to stay overnight.
Chemotherapy has different effects on different people depending on various factors such as the type of cancer, the stage of the cancer etc. While some people continue their daily routine even when taking the therapy, some of them have to go through severe side effects such as hair loss, fatigue, constipation etc.
What is a Daycare Centre
A daycare centre for chemotherapy is a dedicated cancer clinic which has modern equipment for chemotherapy and other illnesses. A daycare centre is designed for patients who are suffering from cancer and are advised with small procedures or chemotherapy where night stay is not required in the hospital. Such patients are given the procedures in the day time so that day can comfortably go back home the same day and sleep. Daycare centres provide a full-fledged approach to the cancer patients and survivors so that they can be treated with utmost care and comfort which is the top priority.
Advantages of Daycare Centres
Daycare centres are specially designed for the cancer patients and survivors keeping in mind their comfort and safety. They have many advantages, some of which are mentioned below.
- One of the main advantages of daycare centres is that people who work there are all trained for cancer treatment and work under expert oncologists.
- As compared to the outpatient wing, a daycare centre is very much affordable and saves a lot of time as the patient is not required to stay overnight after the therapy and can go back home on the same day.
- Patients feel more relaxed and comfortable after going back home as they are around their near and dear ones and sleeping on their own comfortable bed.
- There are no travel hassles for patients coming from outside as the patient can go back home on the same day. In this way, relatives of the patients do not have to stay in separate hotels which is a huge relief.
How Much does Chemotherapy Cost in Kenya
In Kenya, most of the patients pay out of pocket for the treatment of cancer while those people who have got themselves insured are not generally paid the full cost of the treatment. As far as the cost of chemotherapy in Kenya is concerned, the actual cost is still unknown but it is estimated that the chemotherapy in Kenya typically costs between KES 6000 to KES 600000 which varies with the hospital you choose, the severity of the disease and the therapies you have been suggested. The costs of chemotherapy is between Sh10, 000 and Sh82, 000 per session in a public hospital, and Sh35,000 to Sh500,000 per session in private hospitals. High cost of treatment for cancer is a huge burden on the patients if they are not insured.
Does NHIF Cover Chemotherapy
The National Hospital Insurance Fund or NHIF has significantly increased the payments made towards the treatment of cancer as compared to previous years. In the last five years, NHIF has increased the payments by around 10% which has proved to be a big relief for the patients. As far as the current scenario is concerned, NHIF provides care packages that pays up to 10 chemotherapy sessions, oral and injectable anti-cancer medicines, inpatient and outpatient oncology services, 20 sessions for Radiotherapy and up to 2 sessions for BrachyTherapy which is used to treat cancers of advanced stages. All these medicines and sessions are payable on a per year basis.
For the first line of treatment, NHIF covers six sessions up to Sh25,000 per session, four sessions for the second and third line treatment and 20 sessions of radiotherapy at Sh3600 per session. All the tests that are conducted during the diagnosis stage and come under Radiology like MRIs, ultrasound, CT scans and PET scans are also covered by NHIF while the Biopsy is covered under the surgical package