INDIANAPOLIS — Around 400,000 people in the world live with hemophilia. Ninety percent of them are undiagnosed and don’t have access to care.
A group of local doctors who specialize in working with these patients are back home after spending two weeks In Kenya, providing care to more than 150 patients with blood disorders.
The group is with the Indianapolis Hemophilia and Thrombosis Center, training local medical staff on hemophilia and sickle cell treatments.
“We at IHTC get a tremendous amount back from working with our Kenyan team," said Anne Greist, the center's co-medical director. "It’s not about us going there and helping and doing good work. It’s about being amazed at the incredible patient care and coming back from those trips and very energized and motivated to try and give better care to our Indiana patient."
The doctors say both hemophilia and sickle cell are inherited lifelong disorders and there are many gaps in care in many less-developed countries.
"The partnership has helped to grow us, especially in terms of this disease. It has helped us to become experts in the treatment of this condition,” said Carole Kilach, a physician in Kenya.
IHTC estimates there are more than 4,000 people in Kenya with hemophilia. There are more people with sickle cell in South African countries than in the United States, and more people living with bleeding disorders with little access to care. The work the group did in Kenya not only saved lives, but could dramatically improve treatment and quality of life for millions.
Indianapolis Hemophilia and Thrombosis Center is the largest hemophilia center in the country and the only center in Indiana. They serve 2,000 people with bleeding disorders in the state.
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