Bill that could help thousands of dialysis patients in Virginia waiting to be passed

By Lezla Gooden - Reporter

SALEM,VA. - One in ten Americans will get kidney disease; because of this alarming statistic a bill called the Dialysis Patients Demonstration Act is scheduled to go in front of Congress any day now.

Vicki Dolley, a dialysis patient, was diagnosed with kidney disease two years ago and has been on dialysis since then. 

“At first it was pretty painful and kind of depressing,” said Dolley.“I made a lot of good friends here, especially the nurses.”

The nurses Dolley refers to are the employees of the Glenver Dialysis center. The center works to make the dialysis process as comfortable as possible. 

In the state of Virginia there are around 11,000 people who are on dialysis daily. The center serves around 20 people a day three times a week. 

The regional operations director, Brian Rodgers, said this disease punishes patients both physically and financially. The proposed bill would help ease both. 

“What this bill does is that it provides the opportunity to prove that consolidated management for that patient provides a better outcome for that patient,” said Rodgers. “Also, (it) decreases the burden and expenses on the system.”

The bill would help consolidate all of the patient’s medical and financial needs.

“Our patients are very sick and typically our patients take 20-plus pills a day,” said dialysis RN Ceceila Kasnick.

“They typically have multiple issues; those issues usually are high blood pressure, cardiovascular disease and diabetes.”

Dolley would be one of the individuals who would benefit from the bill, because she, like many others, suffers from other life-threatening illnesses.

“It has been scary, but I have adjusted pretty well and I don’t let it get me down,” said Dolley.

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