A hidden disease in new clinics’ sights at Caboolture
An innovative new health clinic has been set up at Caboolture to tackle Chronic Kidney Disease (CKD) which is often a hidden illness that affects many locals.
Metro North Kidney Service Director Dr Helen Healy said CKD was a very common disease which affected thousands of Queenslanders.
“This chronic disease often goes under-diagnosed with 90 per cent of people not knowing that they have the condition until it is well advanced and harder to manage,” Dr Healy said.
“When kidney disease progresses, it may eventually lead to kidney failure, which requires dialysis or a kidney transplant. It can also lead to life threatening cardiovascular conditions.”
Dr Healy said there was an increased demand for local kidney care in Caboolture and the number of people suffering from CKD was a lot higher than in areas closer to Brisbane.
“Twenty-five per cent of our Metro North Kidney Service patients, who are diagnosed with CKD, are from Caboolture and the surrounding region,” Dr Healy said.
“The new Keeping Kidneys Clinic at Caboolture, which welcomed its first patient recently, will help to improve the identification, diagnosis and management of CKD locally.
“The clinic primarily focuses on identifying people with kidney disease and working with them to interrupt how the disease progresses.
“The earlier we are able to start this work with people here in Caboolture, the more successful we will be in slowing the progression of the disease, and avoid invasive treatments like renal dialysis.”
It is anticipated that the outpatient clinic will initially see up to 200 patients in its first year, with that number continuing to grow following a 12-month trial period.
As part of the care, patients will be treated by a General Practitioner with Special Interest in CKD, with support from a highly specialised doctor (Nephrologist) from the Metro North Kidney Service.
Caboolture Hospital Executive Director Dr Lance Le Ray welcomed the new clinic which would be located at the Caboolture Community Health Centre.
“The new clinic will complement our recently enhanced specialist outpatient service at the hospital, and increase the care available so that we can continue to meet the needs of our local community,” Dr Le Ray said.
“It is extremely important that we are continuing to attract and introduce specialist services to our community so that our patients do not have to travel to Brisbane to access care.”
The GP with Special Interest project is an initiative being delivered by the State Government’s Clinical Excellence Division, and forms part of the wider Specialist Outpatient Strategy, which aims to implement innovative models of care to increase timely access for Queenslanders to specialist outpatient services.
The Keeping Kidneys Clinic is part of a network of General Practitioner with Special Interest Clinics being trialled across Metro North in the areas of epilepsy, breast health, diabetes, orthopaedics, gastroenterology, general surgery, cardiology, and gynaecology.