More than 100,000 Malaysians are expected to suffer kidney failure over the next two decades, warns the Health Ministry.
"Based on data from National Renal Registry Malaysian, some 39,711 Malaysians were on dialysis due to kidney failure in 2016.
"The number is increasing exponentially every year and it is expected that 106,000 Malaysians will suffer kidney failure requiring dialysis by 2040," Health Ministry medical development division director Datuk Dr Bahari Tok Muda Che Awang Ngah told reporters after launching the MyBuahPinggang webpage here on Sunday (Aug 18).
He noted that 64% of those requiring haemodialysis treatment were diabetics whose kidneys had failed.
"While the recent sugar tax will eventually lead to Malaysians consuming less sugar, more needs to be done to address this health issue.
"What is required is for Malaysians to adopt healthier lifestyles such as exercising more," he added.
Meanwhile, Dr Bahari lamented the extremely low ratio of kidney donors in the country.
"The ratio is three donors to one million population.
"There are several social factors for this and we hope to overcome this through better awareness campaigns," he said.
He added the ministry hope to see 100 donors come forward to help with kidney transplants, particularly involving family members.