Haemodialysis in a rural area: a demanding form of treatment.

A. Brammah*, G. Young, A. Allan, S. Robertson, J. Norrie, C. Isles

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


OBJECTIVE: To determine distances travelled and time spent waiting for transport among hospital haemodialysis patients living in a rural area. DESIGN: Cross sectional survey comparing the subregional dialysis unit in south west Scotland with 12 of the other 13 Scottish Adult Renal Units. SUBJECTS: Forty three Dumfries and Galloway patients and 935 other Scottish patients receiving hospital haemodialysis in November 1999. RESULTS: At the time of the survey 8/43 (19%) Dumfries patients travelled in excess of 100 miles per dialysis day (15,000 miles per year) solely for the purpose of dialysis, compared to 20/935 (2%) elsewhere in Scotland (p < 0.001). Twenty seven (63%) Dumfries and 594 (64%) patients in other Scottish Units relied on hospital car, Patient Transport Service bus or ambulance for the journey home after treatment. Dumfries patients who travelled by Patient Transport Service or hospital ambulance had to wait twice as long before they left the renal unit as patients using a dedicated hospital car or private car. CONCLUSION: Haemodialysis in a rural area has every reason to be considered a demanding form of treatment. Greater promotion of home based treatment would improve the quality of life for many of these patients, while dedicated hospital cars would reduce 'car to needle time' for those who remain on hospital haemodialysis.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)294-299
Number of pages6
JournalHealth bulletin
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - Sep 2001


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