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Patients with end stage kidney disease can now receive dialysis and connect to their treating medical team without having to leave the comfort of home.
Princess Alexandra Hospital is one of the first dialysis units in Queensland to offer the Claria device, an overnight Automated Peritoneal Dialysis (APD) machine that can be remotely accessed by a medical team to monitor the progress of dialysis treatment in real time.
The machine collects data on a range of medical observations allowing clinical staff to track the results of treatment and general wellbeing without patients needing to set foot in the clinic.
The Peritoneal Dialysis Unit (PDU) began the trial of Claria in 2018 which has now evolved to all patients requiring APD using this specific machine at home.
Nurse Unit Manager, Kylie Pegg pushed for the implementation of Claria for home dialysis and says the transparency and responsiveness afforded by the device allows patients greater independence and a better quality of life with reduced impost on the clinical team.
“With any chronic disease, we try to figure out what works best for the patient to help manage their disease. Claria is a great example because our clinical team can monitor them from the unit without the need to bring them in so often,” Kylie said. “We’ve now incorporated the device into what we were already doing with the benefit of additional data and monitoring.”
Prior to the device, treatment schedules would rely on home dialysis patients recording and reporting their symptoms on a printed card for follow-up at appointments every two months.
“Before some patients wouldn’t tell us about their machine alarms because they don’t want to burden the team with what they see as bad news so we could only work off a snapshot in time of their experiences,” Kylie said.
“We can now see their status day-to-day, we can see if they’re alarming at night, and we can contact them to troubleshoot. Less alarms generally mean better sleep for patients.”
The data provided by Claria means clinical staff can focus on preventative medicine allowing patients to focus on living their best life.
“We’ve found the real-time data is preventing bigger problems before they start. We can see things like contamination so we can coordinate with the patient to make minor alternations to stop them getting infections. Overall, it’s more beneficial and it fits with the focus on person centered care in PDU.”
PDU’s goal is to keep patients in the comfort of home and out of hospital clinics to reduce the burden of travel on patients and improve access to clinical support for those kidney patients who have higher dependency.