August 19, 2013

Traveling or Transferring Patients

Yes you can Travel while on Dialysis!

Many years ago, dialysis patients were extremely restricted as to travel. Dialysis does not mean your travel days are over. Need help planning your getaway? Call our dialysis unit….(305) 388-5222. Today, with proper advance planning, the dialysis patient can enjoy both the leisure or business benefits of a normal travel life. The following are certain key tips which will make your travel as a dialysis patient more safe and comfortable.

1. Contact the dialysis unit where you will be travelling several weeks in advance.

It is very important that you know your itinerary well in advance of travel and that you reserve your dialysis chair prior to departure.

2. Maintain close contact with your dialysis facility’s social worker as you make your travel plans.

Contact with your social worker is essential. He or she will help provide necessary documentation to the other dialysis facility. In addition, the social worker will be an important contact for you as to information needed by other treatment facilities as you are abroad. In most cases, you will at minimum need a recent (within 6 months) EKG and chest X-ray and a hepatitis screening. Some units may also require an HIV test.

3. Educate yourself as to the local hospitals in the areas where you will be traveling

Having information as to the hospital and medical resources available to you in your location of travel gives you greater control over your clinical care in the event of an emergency situation. Do your research ahead of time.

4. Carry your essential supplies and information with you

Hand-carry your doctor’s contact information, your dialysis facility contact names and number, all your medicines, the log sheet from your last treatment, and most recent lab results

5. PD patients can have their supplies sent to their place of travel

If you are on PD and are leaving for an extended period of time, notify your PD Nurse as to your plans and itinerary. Ask your nurse for names and contact information of nearby units in case you have a problem. It may be wise to make contact with at least one of these facilities prior to departing. Again, do research as to the local hospitals and their policies. Thirty days prior to your trip, you may wish to contact your PD supplier so you can coordinate delivery of supplies. It may be wise before you depart to confirm that the PD supplies have arrived at their destination.

6. Notify your Nephrologist and your treatment nurse regarding your travel plans prior to departure.

Make sure to notify your dialysis treatment staff prior to your departure so that any clinical concerns are properly addressed prior to your travels.