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Sensing Savvy

Vascular Access Coordinator Interview: Forest Rawls

Posted by Deborah Brouwer-Maier RN, CNN on Apr 10, 2017 7:00:00 AM

Forest Rawls had his first kidney care experience while serving in the U.S. Navy as a transplantation technician in 1974. He held the following positions, operating room technician, plasmapheresis technician, hemodialysis technician, tissue bank technician and as a tissue and organ harvest procurement team member — but it was kidney care that really stood out to him.

Now, he’s a vascular access coordinator with Emory Healthcare Dialysis Clinics, a position he intends to hold until he retires.

We sat down with Forest to learn why he loves being a vascular access coordinator and what you should consider if you want to be one.

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Topics: Hemodialysis

What to Know About the Dialysis PATIENTS Act

Posted by Deborah Brouwer-Maier RN, CNN on Mar 6, 2017 6:30:00 AM

Patients with end-stage renal disease (ESRD) require costly and complex care. The Dialysis PATIENTS Act was introduced by Congress to give these patients an additional choice for receiving care. It also aims to address the integrated care limitations of programs like Medicare Advantage ESRD Chronic Special Needs Plans and ESRD Seamless Care Organizations.

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Topics: Hemodialysis, dialysis patients

Why Your Dialysis Clinic Needs a Vascular Access Coordinator

Posted by Deborah Brouwer-Maier RN, CNN on Feb 6, 2017 6:30:00 AM

Often referred to as the Achilles heel of hemodialysis, the vascular access is the lifeline of the patient — successful hemodialysis depends on it.

When an access fails, serious complications can occur. The patient is at risk for infection, sepsis — even death. For a dialysis clinic, these patient complications can result in missed appointments, delayed scheduling and surgery cancellations, which can hurt a clinic’s bottom line.

For many clinics, continuity of care is a major concern.

What if one new hire could help ensure continuity of care and address access issues before they occur?

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Topics: Hemodialysis

Kidney Care News to Know for January

Posted by Deborah Brouwer-Maier RN, CNN on Jan 30, 2017 6:30:00 AM

Nephrology Practices & Optimizing Performance

To help nephrologists determine whether compensation is the best it could have been this year, the Renal Physicians Association has published its biennial nephrology business survey results in an interactive tool. The tool “helps practices identify areas of excellence and those that can be improved upon in ways not previously available,” according to Nephrology News & Issues. The survey found many practices have seen an increase in patients and they rely more heavily on advanced practitioners to provide this care.

Source: Nephrology News & Issues

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Topics: Hemodialysis

Kidney Care News to Know for December

Posted by Deborah Brouwer-Maier RN, CNN on Dec 21, 2016 8:00:00 AM

ASN Kidney Health Workforce Analysis Shows Mixed Picture

A new report on the nephrology workforce from the American Society of Nephrology shows a decrease in new nephrologists this year, but a possible increase next year. Other notable findings include:

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Topics: Hemodialysis

What to Know about the CDC's Safer Dialysis Initiative

Posted by Deborah Brouwer-Maier RN, CNN on Dec 5, 2016 7:00:00 AM

Behind cardiovascular disease, bloodstream infections are the second highest killer of hemodialysis patients. The death rates from infection could be halved if dialysis facilities implemented the CDC’s Core Interventions for Dialysis Bloodstream Infection Prevention, the health agency notes.

To make dialysis professionals more aware of these interventions, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has launched a “Making Dialysis Safer for Patients” initiative.

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Topics: Clinical Trends, Hemodialysis

5 Stages of Chronic Kidney Disease

Posted by Deborah Brouwer-Maier RN, CNN on Nov 30, 2016 6:30:00 AM

Chronic kidney disease (CKD), a progressive disease that can lead to kidney failure and death, affects 26 million Americans. Early detection can help to prevent or delay progression of the illness. However, early detection can be problematic because the signs and symptoms of early kidney disease are often not obvious.

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Topics: Hemodialysis

Interview: Ferruh Artunc on His Abstract from Kidney Week 2016

Posted by Deborah Brouwer-Maier RN, CNN on Nov 29, 2016 7:00:00 AM

The Transonic team spoke with professor Ferruh Artunc on the abstract he presented at Kidney Week 2016. Artunc’s abstract is the first study to show a prognostic significance of measuring hemodynamic parameters in HD patients. See what he had to say about it as well as the high cardiovascular death rates among hemodialysis patients below.

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Topics: Hemodialysis

Trial Evaluates Impact of Access Blood Flow Surveillance on Reduction of Thrombosis in Arteriovenous Fistulas

Posted by Deborah Brouwer-Maier RN, CNN on Nov 28, 2016 7:00:00 AM

Clinicians from the Hospital Infanta Sofía, Madrid, Spain, undertook a three-year follow-up multicenter, prospective, open-label, controlled RCT to determine the impact of access blood flow surveillance in AV fistulas.

The group acknowledged at the outset that surveillance remains controversial because randomized RCTs failed to consistently demonstrate the benefits of flow-based surveillance even though vascular access clinical guidelines recommend monitoring and surveillance protocols to prevent vascular access thrombosis.

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Topics: Hemodialysis

Pediatric Vascular Access Surveillance Examined at Boston Children's Hospital

Posted by Deborah Brouwer-Maier RN, CNN on Nov 23, 2016 6:30:00 AM

Pediatric nephrologists at Boston's prestigious Children's Hospital recognized that an arteriovenous (AV) access is the preferred vascular access for dialysis delivery in children and adolescents requiring chronic hemodialysis (HD). They also understood that, because of the small size of the accesses, maintenance of an access after it is created becomes all the more important and difficult.

Ultrasound dilution (UD) monitoring of AV access flow is widely used in adult HD units for early stenosis detection, but its experience in pediatrics is limited. Therefore, the Boston group they undertook a study to examine its usefulness in children and adolescents.

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Topics: Clinical Trends, Hemodialysis

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