Critical Analysis on the Care of Hemodialysis Patients


Critical Analysis on the Care of Hemodialysis Patients in the Acute Care Setting Chronic kidney disease (CKD) is a broad term that refers to a mixed group of diseases that affects the structure and function of the kidneys (Levey & Coresh, 2012). Indeed, in Australia, CKD is now quickly becoming a crucial health burden, especially as it is estimated that about 1.7 million Australians are known to have symptoms related to CKD e.g. albuminuria and decreased kidney function. Unfortunately, less than 10% (more than 1.5 million people) of the aforementioned individuals are aware that they are at risk of developing CKD (Australian Bureau Statistics, 2013). Hemodialysis continues to be the mainstay treatment offered to patients with end-stage renal disease (ESRD). In fact, in 2013, the Australian Bureau of Statistics reported that the vast majority or 80% of all CKD patients are on home or hospital/satellite hemodialysis. Success relies heavily on the knowledge, experience, and skills of nurses, who are at the frontline of providing care to hemodialysis patients. Then again, despite being the most established treatment for chronic renal failure, nurses and nephrologists have been confronted with numerous challenges, especially in the acute care setting i.e. beginning hemodialysis treatment. As such, numerous studies have been dedicated to understanding and overcoming such challenges (Oluyombo et al., 2014). Indeed, immense technological and methodical advances have been made since its introduction over the last three decades. In majority of Australian hospitals, nursing care has focused therapeutic care on assisting CKD patients in hemodialysis in the acute care setting. This paper, therefore, provides relevant insights on the various acute care needs of CKD patients. More importantly, however, the paper highlights the importance of perceiving the patient as a bio-psycho-social-spiritual being rather than focusing solely on the patient?s disease?that is CKD.