Tanzania performs first ever Heart Bypass surgery

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Tanzanians with heart problems need not go abroad for medical attention after Tanzania doctors perform a historic heart bypass surgery successfully today.

The doctors were able to perform a heart by-pass surgery which allows doctors to operate on the heart of a patient as it beats, unlike the standard one where doctors are forced to stop the patient’s heart until the surgery is completed.

A renowned cardiovascular surgery Doctor Nyangasa Bashir told the BBC that the transplant surgery of blood vessels outside of the machine is a landmark in Tanzania.

The surgery was performed at Jakaya Kikwete Cardiac Institute (JKCI), with help from a team of doctors from a leading Indian (New Delhi-based) BLK Super Specialty Hospital.

More patients will be able to access the surgery at a reduced price in the country instead of going abroad for help and it will also reduce costs for governments transporting heart patients abroad.

“Performing a heart by-pass surgery costs 27m/- for a single patient abroad and if a patient decides to undergo such surgery in Tanzania, he/she will have to pay between 8m/- and 10m/-,” said Head of the Cardiology Unit at the JKCI, Dr Peter Kisenge

The two day pilot exercise is targeting 18 patients.

The New Delhi-based hospital intends to provide training to doctors from Tanzania in the Indian capital and regularly send teams of eminent doctors from India to Tanzania to work with a team of cardiologists at JKCI as well as perform complicated surgeries according to Daily News Tanzania.