Renal community nurse specialists
Our team supports patients to live independently at home, while having treatment for kidney disease.
We also work in clinics, for example the low clearance clinic supporting patients to decide what type of renal replacement therapy is right for them.
We work with other healthcare professionals outside the kidney unit, such as GPs, doctors and nurses from other hospitals and palliative care teams, to help you manage your symptoms.
More on what we do
Our team has a set geographical area. Currently, this is split into Exeter and East Devon, South Devon, North Devon, West Devon and North East Cornwall, Mid Devon, South and East Somerset and North and West Somerset.
Each nurse specialist is qualified to assess, develop and implement specialist renal nursing care programmes. We do this in partnership with each patient and their families. We will provide advice, education, support and care to patients with chronic and end-stage kidney disease.
A large part of our role is about providing emotional and psychological support to patients and their families. We know this can significantly help you adjust to life on renal replacement therapy.
We also participate in and evaluate research and clinical audit to improve on what we do and make sure each of our patients is receiving the most appropriate treatment.
Our role is to support patients with declining kidney function. We take our referrals from the renal consultants (doctors who specialise in kidney diseases). We initially provide education on the available treatment options to help you plan for the symptoms of kidney decline.
We do this by visiting you at home or talking to you via telephone or video consultation.
Treatment options can include:
- haemodialysis (the most common type of dialysis);
- peritoneal dialysis (uses the inside lining of your abdomen - the peritoneum - as the filter, rather than a machine);
- renal conservative medical management (where the focus of care is on your quality of life and symptom control).
We support patients through regular consultations in our low clearance clinics. These clinics can be face to face or via telephone or video link. Their purpose is to monitor patients to help reduce symptoms and preserve your remaining kidney function for as long as possible.
When you start haemodialysis, you will be transferred to the care of either the dialysis unit or the Home Haemodialysis Team. If you start peritoneal dialysis, you will initially come under the care of the Peritoneal Dialysis Hospital Team before being transferred back to us. We'll then provide ongoing 4-6 weekly consultations, which can be at a local clinic or at your home.
Renal Community Nurse Specialists and the area they currently cover:
- Anu Partanen–Wells: South Devon & Torbay
- Jane Tanasa: Exeter & East Devon
- Cathy Rowe: North Devon
- Charlotte Challaghan: West Devon and North East Cornwall
- Jennie Brown: Mid Devon, South and East Somerset
- Kevin Wilson: North and West Somerset
Renal Community Nurse Specialist Office: 01392 402537 (voicemail is available).
Office hours 8.30am - 4.30pm, Monday to Friday, excluding bank holidays.
Patient leaflets and documents
Clinics: Monday to Friday, 9am to 4pm, in various localities.