Kidney failure changes lives and the changes can be dramatic. For those that are suffering with it have nick named it ‘The Silent Plague’, macabre but fitting. Renal failure can come on very quickly. In many cases patient’s first signs are that they aren’t feeling so good, have an appointment at the hospital and before you know it you have to incorporate long periods every week into their working week just to survive.
We are a charity that helps patients with kidney disease and failure when they most need it; sadly this is usually when they are at their worst. We literally help them keep their normal family lives together. Many of our patients have to settle into coping with the treatment, many of them are the main income for the family. We will be there, if they need it, to help pay for their normal day to day expenses. We’ll help with electricity bills, heating bills, water bills. We’ll help them keep their kids at school and help them maintain a normal family life so that their children feel that life is still worth living. Mum, Dad, their brother or sister may have to have their treatment but at least some things in the home can stay the same.
We help people to keep their home life going. But if this ever happen to you, would you like anyone else to know that you needed that sort of help? I imagine you’d hate it wouldn’t you? Which is why you won’t have heard that much about the Jersey Kidney Patients Association – because we handle this help in complete confidence, so that no one but you needs to know what is happening.
These welfare payments we make can see upward of £40k a year from our main fund and remains the core of why we were formed in the first place. Together with welfare we are committed to support our renal unit to ensure the best care, whether nurse or equipment, is available. We support the Renal Unit Charitable Trust as this was set up to help fund staff training. Funding for training has been cut in line with all government funding, yet the need for the right qualified staff is still increasing in line with the amount of renal patients being diagnosed with some sort of real disorder.
Some of our senior citizens sometimes opt for no treatment as they loose hope. For their families, the JKPA are there to ensure they are supported, and in the past, we have funded a palliative nurse to care for a patient so they could die at home with their family and loved ones around them. The nurse’s cost is around £1,000 a day.
Whilst we are a quite 'local' charity, we don't lobby our government but prefer to work with them for the good of our patients. Our softly, softly approach has seen the JKPA as key to the opening of the new renal unit six years ago. We have also been key the replacement of several of the old dialysis machines to the tune of £55,000! Whilst our Health Service have funds to transport and look after the patient when they have to go to Guy's Hospital in London, most of the time there is no money for the loved one or family that need to go with them. The JKPA ensure they are able to be with their sick relative at their time of need.
If you are a Jersey Kidney Patient and you need our help, we are here for you. If you need a chat that may lead you to needing our help, please contact our Helpline on 01534 651555. Leave a message, and one of our Welfare sub-committee will get back in touch in complete and total confidence. Or you can email us at firstname.lastname@example.org .