Friday, November 16, 2012 | By arlene | 4 Comments

We met with the Clarkston, MI Davita clinic to discuss concerns raised by a patient. We were a little amused to be greeted by an armed guard.

The patient felt concerns with his treatment were not being listened to and that he was being retaliated against by voicing those concerns about care issues. In the beginning the meeting was tense, but the outcome was what the patient wanted. He had a chance to voice his dialysis care and how he felt retaliated for expressing any concerns.

The Davita Corporate Regional manager in attendance, I found was actively listening and took notes.  I found her easy to talk with, was open minded, and not feeling attacked. I think she also now is more aware of how patients feel about their dialysis experience at Davita clinics.

The Medical director was also present, open to suggestions, listened to the patient’s feelings. The patient explained how he felt about his care. I do feel that after leaving the meeting the Nephrologists understood more about patient feelings and fears, and will be more receptive to patients needs in the future.

I felt the Social worker was the most empathetic of all. She apologized to the patient and realized that many patients feel threatened when they are undergoing dialysis and someone in authority is talking to them. The patient explained how he and other patients fell with someone towering over them while restrained during dialysis. I feel this is a major issue with most patients, standing over a patient, questioning them, is intimidating. I have a feeling the Social Worker will approach patients differently.

We feel this clinic is receptive to the need for patient/clinic relation changes.

The patient we advocated for has a voice and is being heard and respected. He reports that his care has greatly improved.

It took a brave patient and a brave spouse to speak out on care. We really did meet 2 new friends.

Davita Clarkston, MI gets high marks for meeting with us and listening to our patients needs. We hope that this is small opening in the Davita Corporate Wall and may lead to better a better understanding of what their dialysis patients concerns are, and willingness to work with us to that end.


  1. November 16, 2012, by Deborah

    Congratulations!!!!! You won another battle!!!! I wish all DaVita’s Social Workers were as understanding as the one you met with in Michigan.

  2. November 16, 2012, by Chris

    Great to hear you ran into some reasonable people! Nice to hear things went smooth and the patient is happy – may there be more stories like this.

  3. November 16, 2012, by Lori Gallero

    Thank you to Bill and Arlene for coming to Michigan to help us with Phil’s concerns at the Davita Dialysis clinic he goes to in Clarkston. We were satisfied with the results that came of the meeting. I do not think that we would have had as much of a good outcome with out Arlene representing us as our advocate. I do feel the facility administrator has work to do in understanding the patients and their concerns but his care does appear to have improved since the meeting. I really think that the facility administrator thought that Arlene would not show up for the meeting. Arlene was fabulous and I believe enlightened by sharing documented facts with the staff regarding patient care. I have been invited to see the doctor while he is on rounds next week. The social worker is actively trying to help us with various needs and concerns. Thank you again Arlene and Bill. We are blessed to have you both in our lives and feel that patient care in our facility will benefit all concerned. Again, Thank you so much!

  4. November 16, 2012, by Kathy Day RN

    This report is heartening. Engaging patients in any healthcare setting is the goal and need of facilities, no matter what the specialty is. But, dialysis differs in that these patients are completely dependant on treatments for survival. I am proud to know Arlene and particularly proud of the patient and his spouse who brought Arlene to MI to speak out about dialysis care concerns. The patients there AND the providers will benefit from this meeting. Communication and respect are key to any discussion.

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