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Around three million people in the UK have kidney disease

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Empowering patients through shared haemodialysis care Angela Lumsden

23 January 2019

Key players involved in a project to improve the care of patients on haemodialysis (HD) met in Leeds yesterday (January 22), to celebrate and share the success of the project and discuss the next steps.

Led by a team at Sheffield Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust in collaboration with Kidney Research UK, the SHAREHD project is part of The Health Foundation’s £3.5million ‘Scaling Up’ improvement programme.

The aim is to help people on HD become more independent and confident in taking responsibility for their own treatment.

With the support of healthcare staff, people are given the opportunity to do up to 14 tasks, such as preparing equipment, measuring weight and blood pressure and self-cannulation.

They can get involved in as many tasks as they feel comfortable and able to do, at a pace that suits their individual needs.

Over the course of the three year programme, SHAREHD has been put into practice in 19 renal units across the UK and many more in the UK and further afield are keen to get involved in the future.

Those who have taken part so far say they feel more confident, have more control over their treatment, a greater understanding of their condition and HD treatment and have even found it to be a stepping stone towards home or self-care dialysis.

Project lead Professor Martin Wilkie, from Sheffield Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, said: “We are delighted that more HD patients now have the opportunity to take a greater role in their own care through our empowering project, thanks to the funding from the Health Foundation. Through this intervention we have hopefully delivered not only the best outcomes for patients, but also utilised health care resources as effectively as possible, in partnership with a number of leading organisations.”

Kidney Research UK supported the project with patient engagement and communications advice as well as using its experience gained through other quality improvement programmess such as ASSIST CKD (which is also supported by a grant from the Health Foundation and maps data from routine blood tests to detect patients at greatest risk of kidney disease progression).

Michael Nation, director of development for Kidney Research UK, said: “We are delighted to have worked with Professor Martin Wilkie and the rest of the Sheffield team to improve the quality of life and care for kidney patients.

“We used our experience and built on what we have already learnt from other improvement projects to make sure the best evidence translates into real and sustainable patient benefit. We want shared HD care to become the norm across all dialysis centres.”

Find out more about SHAREHD.

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