Providing care close to home
Mar 15, 2019
Unit celebrated World Kidney Day by Lachlan McIvor QT.
SITTING still in a chair for four hours at a time, three times a week, isn’t anybody’s idea of fun.
That’s why the renal unit at St Andrew’s Ipswich Private Hospital does its best to try to create a home away from home.
The unit celebrated World Kidney Day yesterday, joining a global effort to promote the importance of the organs to our health and reduce the impact of kidney disease.
It is the first private renal unit in Ipswich following the hospital’s redevelopment last year and treats 12 patients.
Chronic kidney disease is estimated to affect one in 10 people worldwide and while severity can vary, the condition is incurable and sufferers require lifelong care.
It often has no symptoms, with signs easy to miss or attribute to something else, and is diagnosed by a blood test.
If they are unable to get a transplant, the only other alternative is dialysis treatment, which acts as an artificial kidney to remove excess water and toxins from a patient’s bloodstream.
Nurse Unit Manager Kylie Linwood said patients receive treatment three times a week for four hours on average.
“We get to know our patients so well because they’re coming here so regularly. It’s like a little family,” she said.
We’ve got quite a few of our clients who were travelling into Brisbane and now might only have to drive five or ten minutes.
“It has made a massive improvement to their day. They’re not as fatigued and feeling a lot better.”
The purpose of the day is to encourage screening of all patients with diabetes and hypertension and preventive behaviours.
It also promotes the life-saving act of the kidney donation.
“It’s definitely something people need to be aware of and get checked regularly,” Ms Linwood said. “Exercise, drink plenty of fluids, don’t smoke and maintain a healthy diet and lifestyle to contribute to keeping your kidneys healthy.”
With permission from The Queensland Times