- Name: Marie Mukandinda
- Disease: Breast Cancer, Hypertension, and Asthma
- Contact: 0780886210
I am Marie Mukandinda, a 57-year-old woman who lives in Kigali, and I have been living with Breast Cancer, Hypertension, and Asthma. Before the COVID-19 pandemic, my journey to the health facility required money such as travelling to Kibagabaga Hospital, Butaro Hospital from Ruhengeri, but my relatives sponsored me.
Unfortunately, those who used to support me stopped because of financial issues as an impact of the pandemic. There is a doctor who helped with tickets to reach Kanombe hospital, but I don’t know if he is affiliated with an organization. I think he represents an organization that sponsors me.
My experience in the process of reaching the hospital during the lockdown was terrible. I used a motorbike and a bus to reach Butaro Hospital, and it was possible to spend 3 days there waiting to get better and come back home. However, I have not taken any medicine because of the lockdown. Also, I can’t breathe when wearing a facemask, and I have hearing complications. The good news is that I got treatment from Kibagabaga Hospital which is near to me, and Kanombe Hospital replaced Butaro except when they sent us back to Butaro Hospital for further treatment.
COVID-19 extremely impacted us. For instance, I ate and drank because the other doctor brought me milk, sugar, and porridge flour but all stopped. As people living with cancer, we need more drinks because of pain and high burning temperature inside our body. You understand it is a big challenge for us who are unemployed.
Someone can sponsor me to start a small business so that we can get food. I lost weight because of not eating what I used to eat, and I had general weakness and a headache. I have done nothing about asthma except staying inside the house. Since I don’t get adequate treatment, I feel pain in the vessels and chest, and there was a time when I couldn’t breathe.
I think we should get a transport facilitation and something to drink as well. We need a lot of support. Even food is not available.
They give me for instance Minocycline covered by Community-Based Health Insurance but not applicable for expensive drugs. For the expensive drugs, it requires me to buy them on your own in a private pharmacy. You can advocate for us so that Community-Based Health Insurance can cover all medical costs especially those who are in Ubudehe Category 1.