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Date posted: 5 August 2013
A renal dialysis clinic in Alice Springs is growing an innovative way to make the treatment easier on its Indigenous patients. In the past eight years, renal patients with type 2 diabetes who require the treatment has doubled. For those living in remote communities in Central Australia, getting access to treatment usually means moving to town. Many are treated at the Purple House in Alice Springs, a not-for profit dialysis clinic run by the community.
Christy Van Der Heyden, the clinics wellbeing coordinator says the Purple House is doing whatever it can to make its patients feel more at home. This has involved planting a new garden to produce healthy food and traditional medicinal plants. 'Dialysis is three times a week for five hours a day, and every other day you're pretty exhausted,' Ms Van Der Heyden said. 'People are often away from their families and miss a lot of business. Because they're often the elder people, the communities miss their input as well, so there's a lot of social dislocation going on, on both ends.'
The garden project reminds Indigenous people of home, people that have had to leave their communities on a permanent basis for end stage renal failure and treatment.
Source: ABC Rural