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News from the Kidney Services at Guy's and King's

New Kidney Treatment Centre at Tunbridge Wells


Dr Donal O'Donoghue, National Clinical Director for kidney services, left, and nursing team leader Alan Williams talk with a patient after the opening ceremony.

Aug 1, 2009 / Ros Tibbles

Guy's and St Thomas' NHS Foundation Trust have opened a new Kidney Treatment Centre in the heart of Tunbridge Wells.

This purpose built facility significantly improves the services currently offered to the local community and is within easy reach of local public transport services. Debbie Mundle, Matron, Satellite Haemodialysis, explained that the, "Centre is all about bringing kidney services closer to where patients live".

The centre more than doubles the capacity of the existing kidney unit at Pembury Hospital and includes 20 spaces for haemodialysis allowing 80 patients to be treated each week.

There are eight spaces where patients can carry out their own haemodialysis (self care). Patients who wish to move onto home haemodialysis can now be taught how to do this at Tunbridge Wells rather than travel into the training unit at Guy's.

The centre will carry a full range of clinics including the assessment and support for people with early kidney disease, the support and education for people prior to starting dialysis or receiving a kidney transplant, follow-up for people after a kidney transplant, and the support and follow-up for people having peritoneal dialysis. There will also be regular patient information, education, and discussion groups.

Susan, who currently dialyses in Pembury, was very pleased to have the new centre, "I'm really thrilled about the self caring unit...I can put dialysis round my life rather than my life round dialysis."

The nursing team will be lead by Alan Williams, previously in charge of the kidney unit at Pembury Hospital. Other members of he Guy's and St Thomas' kidney team will be available at the centre including consultant nephrologists and transplant surgeons, specialist renal nurses and nurse consultants, specialist renal dieticians, physiotherapists, and psychologists.

The centre has been planned with an emphasis on patient involvement and staff will ensure that the centre and its services constantly evolve in response to the needs of the patients and the local population.

As Dr Donal O'Donoghue, National Clinical Director for kidney services, said, "I am pleased that this new state of the art Kidney Treatment Centre will be championing the participation of individuals in their own care. People with kidney disease have the right to choose the treatment option that best suits them and their families; part of that choice is to be as fully involved as they wish in self care."