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Kidney Disease
                                                                          — A Guide for Patients

        CHAPTER 7

               he Kidney Patient Care Co-ordinators, at Beaumont Hospital, will provide you with
              practical and social support and advice, will liaise with you and your family
        Tregarding any particular difficulties which your illness presents, and will advise
        you accordingly. This encompasses a wide range of topics, from the different treatment
        options to practical help with housing, medical cards etc.
           Once you have been diagnosed with End Stage Kidney Disease (ESKD), you will be
        referred to one of the Patient Care Co-ordinators either through the ward, the out-
        patients department, or your Consultant. Your allocated co-ordinator will then provide
        information on education, support, practical advice and any other assistance possible
        to help you in the transition to kidney replacement therapy (RRT).

           The Patient Care Co-ordinators, in conjunction with other members of the kidney          PRACTICAL AND SOCIAL SUPPORT
        team, run education sessions from time to time. These are specifically aimed at patients
        who are approaching ESKD and aim to answer the many questions that you will have
        at this time. They include information on the different treatments available for kidney
        disease such as haemodialysis, peritoneal dialysis or transplantation, and explain the
        options available to you, at this time. If you are unable to attend one of these sessions
        or, if there is no session planned at the time of your diagnosis, the Patient Care Co-
        ordinator will provide all the necessary information on a one-to-one basis.

           When you or someone in your family is diagnosed with a chronic illness such as
        kidney disease, the resulting non-medical financial burden can further complicate the
        stress involved, and, it is important to become aware of the various assistance schemes
        available from the Department of Social Protection, the HSE and Local Authorities.
           Not everyone is automatically  entitled to financial
        assistance and some schemes are means tested. Specific
        individual circumstances are also taken into account;        “Not everyone
        therefore, one person may qualify for assistance,
        while another, with the same illness, may not. You          is automatically
        can only find out about your position by making an       entitled to financial
        application and providing all the details required so       assistance, and
        that the relevant authority can determine your
        eligibility. Your Patient Care Co-ordinator can provide   some schemes are
        advice on your entitlements and, where applicable,          means tested.”
        provide a letter of support to accompany your application.

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