DENVER, June 25, 2015 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- DaVita Kidney Care, a division of DaVita HealthCare Partners Inc. (NYSE: DVA) and a leading provider of kidney care services, is dedicated to sharing important emergency preparedness information for dialysis patients who might be impacted by weather-related emergencies – notably the annual Atlantic hurricane season that kicked off on June 1.
"Although experts are predicting a below-average season for the number of hurricanes and tropical storms, those forecasts cannot predict the severity of the storms and their impact on the communities they hit," said Shaun Collard, executive director of the DaVita Village Emergency Response Team (DaVERT). "It's critical to prepare our dialysis centers and our patients for any weather-related emergency that may hinder our ability to deliver treatments."
Over the past few years a number of weather-related emergencies – from hurricanes to blizzards to tornadoes to floods – have interrupted the operation of dialysis facilities across the country, impacting the delivery of life-sustaining treatments to thousands of dialysis patients. Dialysis patients comprise one of the most vulnerable patient populations as patients require life-sustaining medical treatments at least three times a week to survive. DaVERT was created to protect these very patients.
DaVERT created clear guidelines for facilities, teammates, physicians and patients to follow prior to, during and after a severe weather system. DaVERT helps prepare clinical teammates; reinforce policies and procedures; and educate and notify patients prior to and during weather emergencies. The team takes inventory of the facility and its supplies, secures the facility and biohazard storage, and prepares for on-site support of any potential operations interruptions (e.g., bringing in generators to restore power). DaVERT also practices and educates teammates on facility evacuation procedures.
How Patients Can Prepare Themselves
Dialysis patients require treatments at least three times per week and are at high risk during natural disasters and weather-related emergencies. DaVita recommends patients create an easily accessible emergency kit that includes the following:
Emergency phone numbers for doctors and their dialysis center, as well as another nearby dialysis center;
When a widespread emergency or disaster happens, patients are encouraged to begin a three-day emergency diet immediately to limit the amount of fluid and waste their body accumulates. DaVita also recommends that patients keep a copy of the diet with emergency supplies as a guide.
Visit DaVita.com to see the full three-day emergency diet and additional emergency preparedness information, including:
For additional questions, or for assistance during a weather-related event, call DaVita Guest Services at 1-800-400-8331.
About DaVita Kidney Care
DaVita Kidney Care is a division of DaVita HealthCare Partners Inc., a Fortune 500® company that, through its operating divisions, provides a variety of health care services to patient populations throughout the United States and abroad. A leading provider of dialysis services in the United States, DaVita Kidney Care treats patients with chronic kidney failure and end stage renal disease. DaVita Kidney Care strives to improve patients' quality of life by innovating clinical care, and by offering integrated treatment plans, personalized care teams and convenient health-management services. As of March 31, 2015, DaVita Kidney Care operated or provided administrative services at 2,197 outpatient dialysis centers located in the United States serving approximately 174,000 patients. The company also operated 93 outpatient dialysis centers located in 10 countries outside the United States. DaVita Kidney Care supports numerous programs dedicated to creating positive, sustainable change in communities around the world. The company's leadership development initiatives and social responsibility efforts have been recognized by Fortune, Modern Healthcare, Newsweek and WorldBlu. For more information, please visit DaVita.com.
DaVita and DaVita HealthCare Partners are trademarks or registered trademarks of DaVita HealthCare Partners Inc.
SOURCE DaVita HealthCare Partners