Why your dialysis center should have a physician on site
Most commonly, a traditional in-center hemodialysis offers comfortable seating, convenient hours and entertainment for your three treatments a week. This will help you pass the time during each approximately four-hour long session. However, what really differentiates all the dialysis centers is the level of care provided.The most important factor to look for in a clinic is whether the dialysis center will have a physician on site during your treatments. It is a very hard find, but some clinics, like Nephron Corporation and Dialysis Center of Athens, are connected to a doctor’s practice, and most importantly, completely physician-owned.
Here are the reasons why looking for a clinic with an on-site physician are important:
1. Continuity in treatment
The continuity of care offered is the absolute most important factor in a patient’s health.
When the doctor’s practice and the dialysis center are one, you’re cared for by your physician during office visits, but also during your tri-weekly dialysis sessions because the doctor is on site. You’ll see a familiar face — a professional who knows your unique case — and continuity in the treatment you receive.
This same continuity is also provided if the patient is hospitalized for any reason related — or even unrelated — to kidney failure. Your dialysis physician will be the same nephrologist in the hospital. They’ll be able to treat you with the complete picture, enabling optimal care and eliminating unnecessary testing or medications that can be harmful to your health.
2. Immediate attention in an emergency
While your dialysis treatment is as safe as possible, there may be situations that come up when immediate attention from a physician is necessary.
When your doctor is on site during your dialysis, you have the peace of mind you’ll need and the assurance that you will receive immediate care for anything from allergic reactions to low blood pressure.
If a patient has an abnormal lab, the physician can make changes to treatment, medications and any orders immediately.
This applies not only in case of an emergency, but for any questions and concerns that may arise.
For Dr. Pranab Chattopadhyay, a board-certified physician at Nephron Corporation’s Dialysis Center of Athens, being on site benefits the patient in many ways.
“I had a patient that transferred in from one of the bigger named clinics, and within a few treatments I realized the patient’s kidney functions were actually good. I immediately changed the order from three days a week to one, and will be monitoring prior to discharging patient,” said Chattopadhyay.
“This is no fault to the clinic they came from, but such a change can only be made from a qualified physician, not a nurse, or a physician that just floats in and out. It was a moment of pride for me.”
3. The support of a team of staff members
Simply put, your dialysis center should offer on-site care and consultation from a doctor in the practice in which you are a patient. This unique factor offers patients unbeatable care along with the ability to change their plan of care with a quickness that is imperative for end stage renal disease patients.
Plus, the entire team, including a renal nurse and a nutritionist, should be available to help answer your questions and address your concerns. When your dialysis center is part of a physician’s practice, like the Dialysis Center of Athens, you’ll have many resources and caring staff members available during your treatments.
The new, state-of-the-art Dialysis Center of Athens at 210 Hawthorne Park has physicians on site to monitor your ongoing treatment and to ensure your experience is as comfortable and safe as possible. The center also has a lab and pharmacy to take care of any issues immediately.