Harlow’s MP officially opens town’s first ever renal dialysis service

Local Harlow MP, Robert Halfon, was the guest of honour to mark the official opening on 31 January of the new renal dialysis satellite service, run by the Trust from a £1.5 million facility that was created with its specialist partner Diaverum UK in Harlow.Harlow renal unit opening - 4

The new unit, which is located on the Princess Alexandra Hospital site and has 12 dialysis stations, serves patients from the west Essex and east Hertfordshire areas. The new unit, which began treating patients in August 2013, has the capacity to support the dialysis needs of around 70 patients. The vast majority of these individuals will come from the wider Harlow area, including those who previously travelled to units at the Lister hospital in Stevenage, the Royal London in Whitechapel and Broomfield hospital in Chelmsford.

Marking the official opening of Harlow’s renal dialysis unit, Mr Halfon said: “It is an honour to be here. The investment by the Government of £1.5 million in this new facility is of huge importance and will make a very real difference to local patients and their families. It will certainly make their lives a lot easier as they will not have to travel far any more to get their dialysis service.

The Trust’s chief executive, Nick Carver, said: “Renal medicine is one of the Trust’s specialist services and enjoys an excellent national reputation. During the last 12 months, the team has created new renal dialysis units in Bedford and Harlow, adding to the ones it operates already in Stevenage, St Albans and Luton. For the first time ever, people from west Essex and east Hertfordshire now have a renal dialysis service on their doorstep – which is why we were delighted that Robert Halfon agreed to be our guest of honour today.

Mr Carver continued: “When you consider that those on renal dialysis often have to visit a centre like this one in Harlow three or four times a week, often for a few hours at a time, the convenience of a local service becomes immeasurable. And as our renal medicine team has been at the forefront of developing home dialysis services, some patients may find their lives transformed compared to their experiences prior to the new unit opening last year.”