Geraldton grandfather sings unit’s praises

Staff reporterGeraldton Guardian
Derek Councillor with registered nurses Angela McCormack and Pia Grundy at Geraldton Renal Dialysis Unit.
Camera IconDerek Councillor with registered nurses Angela McCormack and Pia Grundy at Geraldton Renal Dialysis Unit. Credit: Supplied

A Geraldton grandfather says he is grateful to be able to receive lifesaving medical treatment in his home town where he has the support of his family.

Derek Councillor has been visiting the Geraldton Renal Dialysis Unit every week since December to have haemodialysis treatment for kidney disease.

He has to receive the vital treatment several times a week and the length of each session can vary between four and six hours. Mr Councillor said he was glad he didn’t have to travel to Perth.

“Having treatments in Geraldton means I can stay close to my children and grandchildren, who give me their full support,” he said.

“I receive treatments three times a week to clean the toxins from my body — it helps do what my kidneys used to do.”

Mr Councillor rated the staff at the Geraldton Renal Dialysis Unit “10 out of 10” for the care they gave.

“They treat everyone equally — they care about their patients and listen to their wants and needs,” he said.

“I feel 100 per cent confident to ask questions.”

The unit, located at the Geraldton Health Campus and run by the WA Country Health Service, provides 108 haemodialysis treatments a week for patients with chronic kidney disease.

WACHS acting clinical nurse manager Bronwyn Cork said the haemodialysis process used an artificial kidney to filter and clean patients’ blood of unwanted toxins and water.

“This process takes around four hours and involves a needle which takes the blood away to the artificial kidney and another needle which returns the clean blood back to the body,” she said.

A focus of Kidney Health Week, which ran April 8 to 14, is to encourage people to reduce their risk of kidney disease by controlling their blood pressure and blood sugar, maintaining a healthy weight, exercising regularly and not smoking.

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