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Medicines not reach patients: National Center of Oncology accused of negligence

Management of the National Center of Oncology and Hematology of Kyrgyzstan is accused of negligence. The reason is that the medicines and expensive drugs provided by international organizations do not reach patients. Dinara Alyaeva, the founder of Pomogat Legko Foundation, said this at a press conference at 24.kg news agency.

According to her, Kyrgyzstan has been the recipient of the expensive humanitarian targeted (smart) drug Gleevec for treatment of patients with chronic myeloid leukemia (CML) since 2004, about 90 percent of them are adults and 10 percent are children.

«This drug is for KIT positive stomach cancer patients. Gleevec is taken daily throughout the patient’s life. The supplying organization is Max Foundation, the receiving organization is Life Line Foundation,» Dinara Alyaeva said.

The National Center of Oncology and Hematology is the official partner of the international humanitarian program on Gleevec and bears full responsibility for the receipt of this medicine by cancer patients in Kyrgyzstan.

About 300 patients in the country are recipients of Gleevec. The market cost of this drug in Moscow is about 70,000 rubles per package.

Max Foundation also supplies reagents (cartridges) for tests made using a special GenExpert analyzer. «Patients are forced to travel from all over the republic for tests and medicines, it is, of course, difficult for the patient,» Dinara Alyaeva told.

She stressed that over the 16 years of work of this program, neither the Ministry of Health, nor the management of the National Center of Oncology and Hematology have done anything to ensure smooth and transparent receipt of this drug by patients in all regions of the country.

According to an investigation by patients’ organizations, the last batch of this drug was sent by plane in June 2020, and cleared by customs in September 2020.

The quantity indicated by the Max Foundation does not coincide with the quantity indicated by Life Line organization — the receiving organization in Kyrgyzstan, despite the fact that the partner is the National Center of Oncology and Hematology, and differs in the amount declared by the center (decreasingly).

Dinara Alyaeva

According to Max Foundation, all batches of the drug were sent to Kyrgyzstan in June 2020: Gleevec 100 milligrams — 1,330 packs.

The Ministry of Labor and Social Protection of the Kyrgyz Republic registered it only on September 9, and it provides other figures — 1,268 packs of Gleevec were received. «The difference is 62 packs, considering that the price of each of them is 70,000 rubles,» Dinara Alyaeva says.

In addition to Gleevec, difference is also registered on another drug from Max Foundation — Tasigna 200 milligrams was sent in the amount of 168 pieces, and the National Center of Oncology and Hematology received 144 packs.

«Management of the National Center of Oncology and Hematology cannot provide clear and comprehensive information on this humanitarian cargo and program. By the way, the patients themselves get customs clearance for the drug and deliver it to the National Center of Oncology and Hematology for issue to patients. Patients from all over the country have to come to Bishkek to get the drug every month. Why is the delivery of the drug to the healthcare organization in the regions still not provided?» founder of the foundation said.

She also noted that the director of the National Center of Oncology and Hematology Ernis Tilekov could not provide the supplying organization (Max Foundation) with a list of patients, and the issuing nurse replied that she knew the patients «by sight».

«This is a fact of blatant irresponsibility and negligence in relation to a country receiving international humanitarian aid in such an amount (about a million US dollars a year) for cancer patients in the absence of adequate financial support from the Kyrgyz government,» Dinara Alyaeva noted.

In this regard, Dinara Alyaeva, the founder of Pomogat Legko Foundation, demands from the management of the center to provide explanations on the program and on ensuring continuous treatment of patients with Gleevec.

«Any delay in treatment means a high risk of death for a cancer patient. We earnestly ask the government to pay attention to this fact and ensure control over this situation,» Dinara Alyaeva said.