Transplant Athlete
Monday, November 09, 2009
  Like Sands Through The Hourglass...

I found myself humming a Warren Zevon tune tonight. Maybe it's because I'm stuck between the rock and the hard place. Dad get me outta this.

So...I met with Davita's "Care Team" on Tuesday November 3rd. They told me I was being discharged from the Home Program and I would be dialyzing In-Center. They felt I was too much of a liability to the fledgling program. They told me I was to dialyze at home that night and then go In-Center on Thursday, so apparently I wasn't in any immediate danger from myself.

I received the following letter by FEDEX:davita%20discharge.pdf

While signing paperwork for the new clinic, I was asked to sign the "Davita Patient Rights" statement. This is one of a dozen things they ask you to sign when you start dialysis and I signed an identical copy before starting home Hemo. I've included the first page here: davita%20patients%20rights.pdf

Number 12 (and I quote) "To be fully informed of reasons for involuntary discharge or transfer from the facility and to be given advance written notice of 30 days unless the reason involves issues of immediate safety to other patients or teammates. These actions may result in immediate discharge.”

Debra's letter was dated the 3rd and was effective the 4th, she clearly did not give me the 30 days advance notice. As to the actions that would result in immediate discharge...Immediate safety of other patients or teammates...Since I dialyze at home, there's no way I could put others at risk. If I was an immediate risk, why would they let me dialyze that night when they clearly could have said, "get your behind to a clinic."

According to Davita I have a right to file a grievance orally or in writing, so I put together a polite letter that clearly states my case and dropped it off with the Social Worker at Davita Fairfax. When I got home today and checked messages there was a message from the Facility Administrator saying she got my letter and there was no way I'd ever be rejoining their home program; arrangements were made for me to dialyze In-Center at Sterling; and they wanted their equipment back (and I'd better not dialyze at home even though I have almost two months worth of supplies). I'll try to post the message later.

So, now I have to escalate the issue both internally with Davita and the State Board of Health as well as the End Stage Renal Disease Network. Since I'm now dialyzing in-center I have 36 hours in my week that have been freed up to point out to this poor lady that she can't violate my Davita given rights and get away with it. What's the point in making me sign a document listing my rights as a patient if you're just going to throw them out the window at your convenience?


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I've gone through kidney failure twice. The first time in 2000, my mother donated a kidney; and again in 2008, I'm on dialysis waiting for a breakthrough in immuno-suppression medicines before seeking a new kidney.

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Warning Signs for Kidney Disease:

  • High Blood Pressure
  • Burning or Difficulty when Urinating
  • Frequent Urination at Night
  • Blood in your urine
  • Cola or tea colored urine
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  • Lower back pain unrelated to physical activity

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