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How are the Dialysis Centers Near You?

A roundup of local coverage using data from our updated Dialysis Facility Tracker.

Last week, we updated our Dialysis Facility Tracker with the latest data about the quality of care at dialysis centers around the country. As is the hope when we release nationwide data, several local news outlets used our information to cover their local centers in more detail.

Scan through the list below for articles from your area. We’ll be updating this list as more coverage comes in.

CALIFORNIA:

Dialysis website enables patients to compare safety records of clinics, San Jose Mercury News
Some Bay Area dialysis facilities had death rates for the first year of treatment that were 49 to 80 percent worse than expected; others had rates 40 percent better than expected.

Website offers consumer-friendly information on dialysis centers, San Bernardino County Sun

COLORADO:

Dialysis patients have access to facility data using new tools, The Denver Post

Two of 61 dialysis centers in Colorado reported mortality rates significantly higher than expected.

In Colorado, about 3,800 patients that need dialysis, and on average about 1 in 5 dies from serious complications.

CONNECTICUT:

Kidney dialysis patients more likely to survive in Connecticut, New Haven Register
Only one of the state’s 40 clinics shows worse-than-expected mortality rates.

ILLINOIS:

Dialysis Danger: Why Location Matters for Some Kidney Patients, NBC Chicago
Fresenius, a company that owns several dialysis clinics in the area, faced a lawsuit after a patient died at one of its facilities. The company eventually came to a seven-figure settlement with the patient's family, but admitted no wrongdoing.

MICHIGAN:

Oakland dialysis care above average, The Oakland Press
Lists the dialysis adequacy rate for the 20 centers in the Pontiac area.

MINNESOTA:

Data released April 17 shows performance of Minnesota’s dialysis centers, St. Cloud Times
Minnesota’s dialysis centers, as a whole, ranked seventh best in the country during 2010 for having a low average mortality rate compared to the federal government’s expected rate.

Data show how dialysis centers rank, Pioneer Press

When it came to emergency room visits and hospitalizations, Minnesota “didn’t fare so well.” Davita in Northeast Minneapolis had one of the worst score in the country for the rate of observed-to-expected ER visits.

PENNSYLVANIA:

Report shines positive light on York County dialysis options, The York Daily Record

TEXAS:

ProPublica tracking website has dialysis insight, El Paso Times

Dr. Alfonso Chavez, a local nephrologist, expects to see more dialysis patients in the area due to a “disproportionate number of people in El Paso with diabetes and hypertension, which contribute to kidney disease.”

Dialysis Data Shines Light on Clinic Disparities, NBC 5 Dallas – Fort Worth
Three North Texas clinics ranked as some of the worst facilities in the state when it comes to patient death rate compared to expected rate. An international chain called Fresenius runs two of those three sites.

WASHINGTON D.C.:

Dialysis Center Ratings, NBC 4 Washington

Of the more than 160 dialysis facilities in the greater Washington area, 16 percent did “worse than expected” when it came to mortality rates. In particular, the News4 I-Team highlighted the Advanced Dialysis Center – Potomac, a dialysis facility in Arlington, Va., where 78 percent of patients died over a three-year period. Overall, the facility had 153 percent more deaths than the federal government’s “expected mortality rate,” easily making it one of the worst in the area.

David W. Moskowitz MD, MA(Oxon.), FACP

April 21, 2012, 3:36 p.m.

90% of the country’s current 450,000 dialysis patients wouldn’t have to be on the kidney machine if the media had just covered this story when it happened, 15 yrs ago: http://trishatorrey.com/2008/05/06/conspiracy-theories-reversing-kidney-disease-and-personalized-medicine/ And there’d be enough cadaver kidneys for the 10% remaining patients. The US would already be dialysis-free.

Roberta Mikles

April 23, 2012, 7:49 a.m.

Robin, thank you once again for support quality, safe care for patients. The release of this data, you have provided, has done a great service for many. Your continued sincere efforts to help patients does not go unnoticed. We refer patients, and their loved ones, as well as staff that contact us regarding problems in their units to the ‘tracker’ site, considering many facility staff, e.g. technicians never get to see a copy of their own facility’s inspection report, as we are informed.

We continue to post the inspection reports for facilities in California to our website to show the actual day to day care that patients receive -
http://www.qualitysafepatientcare.com

OPINIONS OF
Roberta Mikles BA RN
Director, Advocates4QualitySafePatientCare.com
.(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)

Roberta Mikles

April 23, 2012, 7:51 a.m.

Robin, thank you once again for support quality, safe care for patients. The release of this data, you have provided, has done a great service for many. Your continued sincere efforts to help patients does not go unnoticed. We refer patients, and their loved ones, as well as staff that contact us regarding problems in their units to the ‘tracker’ site, considering many facility staff, e.g. technicians never get to see a copy of their own facility’s inspection report, as we are informed.

We continue to post the inspection reports for facilities in California to our website to show the actual day to day care that patients receive -
http://www.qualitysafepatientcare.com,

OPINIONS OF
Roberta Mikles BA RN
Director, Advocates4QualitySafePatientCare.com
.(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)

thomas smalley

April 23, 2012, 8:14 p.m.

I go to the fresenius kidney center in West Covina California.  I am on the transplant list at UCLA and the Mayo Clinic in Arizona.  The waiting time in California is about 10 years while the waiting time in Arizona is 2-5 years.  Mayo sends me an envelope with a tube for a blood draw which I give to my center.  They are to draw the blood, put a label on it and send it to Mayo.  Mayo did not receive the blood for November 2011 or December 2011.  Then in January 2012 my clinic failed to put the label on the tube so when Mayo received a kidney they could not test to see if I was compatible.  I was called by Mayo and brought the matter to the attention of the supervisor who told me should would look into it.  She finally told me that they did not know what happened to the missing months and said the nurse made a mistake in January.  I am out a kidney because of their mistake.  I have been trying to find a lawyer to take my case but no takers so far.  These people are professionals.  How can they screw up 3 months in a row.
A month later my wife received two phone calls back to back.  The caller said I should forget about the incident as I was in danger.  If I didn’t drop it I could die while on dialysis.  I am still waiting for a kidney.

Roberta Mikles

April 23, 2012, 9:56 p.m.

What do you mean “..my wife received two phone calls back to back. The caller said I should forget about the incident as I was in danger?  :If I didn’t drop it II could die while on dialysis”...WOW, this sounds like a threat?
Call 1-800-847-8842 and we can try and help you—we are advocates who help patients -

The mistakes with your blood can also be reported to the state. You can email me at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) -
Opinion of Roberta Mikles BA RN
http://www.qualitysafepatientcare.com
Dialysis Patient Safety Advocate

Part of the post did not go through -

I am sorry about what happened and there is no excuse. You should contact your physician and let him know what happened, as well as the facility administrator,  you can also contact the California Department of Public Health - Licensing and Certification and they will investigate the situation e.g. not sending your blood - the threat is another thing—- you can call the phone company and perhaps they can trace back the calls - Some phone systems might be able to do this - Also, for example, some phones show the number that is calling you and you can go backwards to see what calls came in and from where—- or I have known some who have just called the police and said they were threatened and perhaps the police can get the phone number of who made the call. However, I would definitely let your physician know and the facility administrator and perhaps put it in writing and give it to them so that you are on record - (this information does not replace medical or legal advice)
Opinion of Roberta Mikles - Dialysis Patient Safety Advocate…

This article is part of an ongoing investigation:
Dialysis

Dialysis: High Costs and Hidden Perils of a Treatment Guaranteed to All

Nearly 40 years after Congress created a unique entitlement for patients with kidney failure, U.S. death rates and per-patient costs are among the world's highest while the biggest for-profit providers flourish.

The Story So Far

Dialysis holds a special place in U.S. medicine. In the 1960’s, it was the nation’s signature example of rationing, an expensive miracle therapy available only to a lucky few. A decade later, when Congress created a special entitlement to pay for it, dialysis became the country’s most ambitious experiment in universal care.

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