LAHORE - The federal government has withdrawn the facility of free dialysis to patients at hospitals, as a result the patients have to face great ordeal rather complications leading threat to their lives. The hospital authorities have also stopped as previous to issue the injections, syringes, needles, VTL cane, drip set and dialyser worth thousands of rupees needed before dialysis process. The dialiser alone costs Rs 3500 while the hospital authorities issue no post dialysis medicine essentially needed to the patients. The decision to withdraw free facility of dialysis came at a time when the kidney transplant legislation is under process. The facility for free transplant has already been withdrawn. A patient cannot undergo transplant unless a close kin of the patient donate his/her kidney. The patients are at risk particularly those who don't have any close kin to donate or whose close kin are elderly and unable to donate kidney. According to an estimate, a patient will have to spend Rs 25/26,000 per month for dialysis. A patient has to undergo dialysis treatment three times a week and 12 times in a month. The agony and hardship to and from the hospital, problems of transportation etc and the hardships of attendants are other hazards that families face. However, they afford to undergo the hardship for their near and dear ones as the dialysis and overhead charges were free but the expenditure beyond their means have perturbed many. It is feared that those who cannot afford to spend such a huge amount may be at risk. There are thousands of patients in the country who needed dialysis but they cannot afford its expenditures, as it is very costly at private hospitals. There is, however, no authority to ascertain the exact number of dialysis patients in the country and to plan allocation of funds for their treatment and rehabilitation. The ever-increasing quackery and adulterated food are the major causes of kidney failure. It was for this reason that Punjab government freed the dialysis at all its teaching hospitals and even at major district hospitals where this facility is available. It is also expanding the dialysis facility to all the district and tehsil level hospitals. However, it is astonishing that the federal government has withdrawn this facility abruptly. The major dialysis center in the City is run at the Sheikh Zayed Hospital, which is the main focus of a large number of population. There was an alarm among the patients and their attendants as the hospital authorities asked them to purchase the necessary medicines and equipments from the market to conduct the dialysis last week. They made a protest before the authorities. Some of them had to run in panic to arrange the money as they reached the hospital for dialysis.