The Renal Network (TRN) has always been dedicated to improving the quality of life for End Stage Renal Patients (ESRD) patients. One of the greatest ways TRN is effective in doing this is highlighting the importance of the patient voice. Research tells us that patients who are knowledgeable about their disease and participate in their healthcare have better health outcomes. TRN recognizes that patients feel peer to peer communication is one of the most valuable ways to share this knowledge. In an effort to have patients & staff work with us to improve facility culture and communication, TRN has redeveloped the former Network Patient Representative Program!
The Facility Peer Program provides an avenue to increase communication among patients, facility staff and The Renal Network. The Facility Peer Program aims to provide patient to patient support, help establish bridges of communication between patients and staff, as well as help facilities to meet some of the patient participation requirements in the Conditions for Coverage (CfC). Ultimately, it will help the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) better understand patient and facility needs. CMS will look to the Facility Patient Representatives (FPRs) to provide the patient viewpoint on topics of special interest to both patients and facilities.
By launching the Facility Peer Program, The Renal Network seeks to provide innovative ways to increase patient education, patient engagement and facility involvement. The Renal Network will work with Facility Patient Representatives and Facility Staff Coordinators to develop educational resources and to learn the best practices needed for patients to live well with kidney disease.
Overall, The Facility Peer Program has two key individuals in each dialysis facility, the Facility Peer Representative (FPR) and the Facility Staff Coordinator (FSC). For patients that may need help to be part of the program, family members, or caregivers, as spokespersons are welcome.
The Facility Peer Representative, and the Staff Coordinator, will provide information and resources to patients, their families, and caregivers to help them become active with their treatment and advocates in their health care. This will help empower patients with knowledge, enhancing their coping skills and quality of life.
In addition, the facility may wish to add Shift Spokespersons to talk with patients who are on different shifts than the Facility Peer Representative. The Facility Peer Representative will work with the Staff Coordinator to secure shift representatives and develop a facility-wide communication program for patients, family members and caregivers.