I have been a renal patient since 2006 when my kidneys failed.
I am now a home hemo-dialysis patient, which means my wife sets up the dialysis machine and hooks me up for an eight-hour run.
On June 12, my wife and I went to Kelowna for our first clinic appointment in the new hospital tower. The first thing they had me do was weigh-in and fill out a form that asked if there were any changes since my last visit. This form is completely redundant as I am in contact with my renal nurse weekly by phone or by e-mail.
Next, they have a reception area that I was to sit in which I will refer to as “chairs.” The rest of my appointment went like this:
My renal nurse comes and gets me from “chairs” and takes me back to a room to go over everything. And when she is done, she walks me back to “chairs.”
Next, the dietician comes and gets me from “chairs” and takes me back to a room to go over everything again, and when she is done, she walks me back to “chairs.”
When the doctor is ready, he comes and gets me from “chairs” and takes me back to a room to go over everything again, and when he is done, he walks me back to “chairs.” The social worker comes and gets me from “chairs” and takes me back to a room to go over everything again, and when she is done, I can finally leave.
Now, I have a great deal of difficulty in walking, as do many other renal patients, and this up and down and back and forth is very painful. The rooms I was taken to were meeting rooms only, not equipped with a computer, and if any one of my team needed some additional information not in the file in front of them, they then had to walk back to their offices to retrieve it from a computer.
This new procedure doesn’t make sense compared to the previous clinic meetings, where the nurse, doctor and dietician could quickly brain storm collectively to make decisions regarding what changes to my treatment and diet would be beneficial to me.
It seems to us that the individual who came up with these new procedures has absolutely no idea of what is best for most renal patients.
Shouldn’t the system work so patients’ care is at the forefront?
If any other renal patients feel as we do, write a letter to the minister of health expressing your concerns.
Malcolm and Judy Farago