Creating a Less Clinical Experience for Dialysis Patients

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MIAMI, FL – One of the most uncomfortable aspects of dialysis treatment is the environment in which it takes place.  Dialysis patients are often sitting in the same chair, in the same room for hours and go through this process several times a week.  Many dialysis centers are very clinical.  This usually refers to the halogen lighting, uncomfortable chairs, and general hospital feeling you get from the room.

Some dialysis providers are recognizing the need to provide a different type of environment for their dialysis patients.  Dialyspa, featured in the video above offers a variety of amenities to patients. KidneySpa LLC in Miami, Florida is another such provider.  “We don’t want to look like a hospital because it reminds them about their medical condition,” says Juan Mauricio Cuellar, nephrologist and owner.

Many existing dialysis centers are following suit.  Many treatment centers are adding individual television monitors, reclining chairs, internet access and more.

Comfortable, but Clinical

Of course, the patients are still receiving dialysis and need assistance from nurses, dialysis technicians, and other medical professionals.  The area and equipment must be clean and sterilized, but that doesn’t mean it can’t be comfortable. The key is to get just the right balance between medical service and comfort.

Some health professionals worry that dialysis patients will begin to judge a dialysis provider by the environment of their office rather than the quality of services.  “The ambience and the quality of care may not be related,” says Joseph Vassalotti, chief medical officer of the National Kidney Foundation.  It’s actually quite difficult to judge the quality of care from the treatment environment.  After all, it’s the disease that needs treatment, not the patient’s comfort.

It is suggested that patients visit dialysis centers before beginning care at a specific location.  If possible, it is also recommended to speak with current dialysis patients to see if they are satisfied with the services they are receiving.

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