Renal News: Winter 2016
Renal News
 Winter 2016

Stats show improved KCC care

green_arrow_up_smaller.JPGOutcomes for non-dialysis kidney patients across BC are continuing to improve, as shown by the provincial Kidney Care Committee’s latest key indicator report. 

The report, for the six-month period ending September 30, 2015, revealed a number of areas where patient care metrics are at the best level since these data were first compiled, in 2012. 


New HD guidelines

The provincial Hemodialysis Committee is developing new, evidence-based guidelines in an effort to standardize care for HD patients across the province, where appropriate. Two of these guidelines are now available one the BC Renal Agency website.


Polycystic Kidney Disease (PKD)

Autosomal dominant polycystic kidney disease (ADPKD) is the most common inherited kidney disorder, and is the fourth leading cause of end-stage renal disease in Canada. There is no cure for ADPKD at this time, but research in recent years has led to improved tools for diagnosis and prognosis, as well as new treatments that may slow the progression of ADPKD in some people.  



TB screening program

An enhanced TB screening program is now operational in seven BC dialysis programs. The program will expand in the next few weeks as lab collection sites in Kamloops, Penticton, and Trail begin operation. Lab collection at Abbottsford and Royal Columbian hospitals is set to launch later this year. Through the program, eventually all in-centre hemodialysis and peritoneal dialysis clinics in the province will provide TB screening for new dialysis patients in their first week of starting dialysis.  


mod choices7.JPG Translated patient training materials

In October kidney care staff across the province started using the new Modality Choices patient training materials and the response has been very positive. Available from the BC Renal Agency website, the materials include PowerPoint presentations, a guide for facilitators, and a patient worksheet and feedback form.


GN Committee update

The Glomerulonephritis (GN) Committee has approved two new protocols for the treatment of membranous nephropathy, which is diagnosed in about 30 patients a year in BC and is one of the many glomerular diseases under the GN "umbrella."

Protocols for calcineurin inhibitors and cyclical cyclophosphamide alternating with corticosteroids are now available on the BC Renal Agency website.

The drugs are effective in slowing or stopping the progression of the disease for these patients. The literature on these drugs is summarized in the supporting evidence documents on the website.

palliative.JPG Palliative care

The provincial Palliative Care Committee (PCC) is developing a series of quality date indicators for palliative patients. The work is guided by a focus on identifying indicators that are most important for patients and that provide a good overall measure of end-of-life renal care. 


Patient acuity scale revised

The BC Renal Agency’s Patient Acuity Scale has been revised. The original tool was designed to assess the stability of patients on dialysis. The revised tool adds patient fragility as a factor in order to recognize changing patient demographics and the impact on staff workload.  

The new scale will be validated at selected HD clinics over the next few months and will be ready for implementation by all clinics across the province in the spring.

Patient experience survey

The BC Renal Agency is conducting its third provincial survey of kidney patients. The survey, which will soon be 

survey1.jpgmailed to all 16,000 kidney patients registered in the PROMIS database, is focused on the core elements of chronic disease management and patients’ evaluation of their experience. The same survey tool was used in 2009 and 2012.

Survey results and analysis of data should be ready for delivery to health authority renal programs by summer. 

PD Assist update

The BC Renal Agency is developing a business case for a provincial PD Assist (PDA) program based on its PDA pilot project.


PROMIS update

Changes are being made at PROMIS to support the development of better applications and improved services to users across BC. A key priority is addressing some of the “pain points” experienced by PROMIS users, such as log-in delays, long response times to queries and reports, and difficulties with different browser versions.


Renal research in BC

The BC Renal Agency website includes an area dedicated to the research and quality improvement (QI) projects of renal care professionals across the province. These activities are driven by a desire to improve patient care and health outcomes. 

To view a listing of these projects, visit the BC Renal Agency’s website research page.

If you have a research paper or QI initiative that you would like included on the website, contact the BC Renal Agency at 604-875-7340 or by email.

Study of race data in PROMIS

The BC Renal Agency is launching a study, under the leadership of Drs. Sean Barbour and Jag Gill, to assess the accuracy of self-reported race data in the agency’s patient database, PROMIS.

Race is a significant factor in health outcomes for many types of kidney disease. Accurate information on race is critical to understanding a patient’s risk of progressive kidney disease and their barriers to accessing care. However, the accuracy of the race data in PROMIS has never been verified.


bckd.JPG BC Kidney Days poster winners

Every year BC Kidney Days features posters from renal teams across the province describing their research, education and patient care initiatives. 


CKD e-learning sessions for primary care

5424a39068b711e6acda1d7d0c5eed551.JPGOver the course of 2016, the BC Renal agency will host a series of one-hour continuing education e-learning sessions for primary care clinicians.



kfc.JPG Kidney Foundation of Canada

The Kidney Foundation of Canada (KFOC) is undertaking a survey to determine the financial burden that dialysis treatment puts onto dialysis patients and their families.




Stats show improved KCC care

New HD guidelines

Polycystic Kidney Disease (PKD)

TB screening program

Translated patient training materials

GN Committee update

Palliative care

Patient acuity scale revised

Patient experience survey

PD Assist update

PROMIS update

Renal research in BC

Study of race data in PROMIS

BC Kidney Days poster winners

CKD e-learning sessions for primary care

Kidney Foundation of Canada

New on the BCPRA website


In the fall issue of Renal News, in a story about the NxStage home hemodialysis machine, we mentioned that the BC Renal Agency's home hemodialysis program was started in 2004. The history of home hemodialysis in BC actually dates back to 1969, with patients trained at St. Paul's Hospital. We apologize for the oversight.

Watch for an article about the pioneers of home hemodialysis in this province in the next issue of Renal News. 

Experts needed for WKD tweeting

As part of our World Kidney Day celebration on March 10, 2016, the BC Renal Agency will be hosting a one-hour tweetsmall-wkd-logo-colour.JPG chat where the general public, including kidney patients, can ask questions or chat with healthcare professionals from the BC renal community via our Twitter account.


We are also looking for a healthcare professional to do a “Day in the Life” feature with live tweets sent over the course of one shift, showing what goes on during a typical day on a renal unit. (See example: Providence Health Care’s Day in the Life of Resident Doctors)

Healthcare professionals from all areas of kidney care are welcome to apply. Those selected will receive an honorarium. Please email if you are interested in participating and have experience using Twitter and/or your own Twitter account. Please specify which position you are interested in by writing either “WKD Tweet Chat” or “WKD Day in the Life” in the subject line.



Shine a Light Kidney Gala

shine-a-light-gala-logo-web_sm.JPGThe 4th annual Shine a Light Kidney Gala: People and Possibilities will be held Thursday March 3, 2016 at the Fairmont Hotel. Co-hosted by The Kidney Foundation of Canada, BC & Yukon Branch and The Canadian Society of Nephrology, this elegant cocktail party supports kidney patients and kidney research. 

For more information and tickets, visit 


WCPD: Celebrating 25 years

wcpdd 25 yr header.JPG

Western Canada PD Days takes place March 31- April 1, 2016 at the Pinnacle Hotel Harbourfront in Vancouver. This year’s conference will be a special 25th anniversary event, with a few surprises in store for attendees.

Event highlights include:

  • Breakout sessions for social workers, dietitians, nurses and physicians
  • Networking dinner at Vistas revolving restaurant at the Pinnacle Hotel Harbourfront
  • Keynote speaker Dr. Thomas Golper from the Vanderbilt University Medical Center in Nashville, to speak about Kinetics & Myths of Various PD Modalities
  • Sessions include The Renaissance of PD in the USA, Cardiovascular Guidelines, International Outreach, Palliative Care, and more.



New physician lead for BCT

david landsberg.JPG

Dr. David Landsberg is the new physician lead for BC Transplant, effective January 1, 2016.  David started the renal transplant program at St. Paul’s Hospital in 1984, prior to the existence of BCT.



Vancouver to host ISPD 2018


The 18th annual Congress of the International Society for Peritoneal Dialysis  (ISPD) has been awarded to Vancouver and will take place May 5-9, 2018. Event preparations begin this year and will involve ISPD, CSN, Western PD Days and the Peritoneal Dialysis Course for Interventional Nephrologists and Radiologists. More partners are expected to come on board in future.



Everyday Champion Award winner

tammy rizmayer crop.JPG

Health renal social worker Tammy Rizmayer was honoured with the 2015 Everyday Champion Award, sponsored by the BC Patient Safety and Quality Council. She will receive her award at a ceremony in Vancouver in February. For more information about Tammy, go to her web profile.

Spice it up!

spice it.JPG

A new resource for kidney patients with recipes and ideas on how to spice up their diet is available online at Spice it Up!.  The recipes are also available in a hard copy cookbook format. 


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