®, a division of DaVita HealthCare Partners Inc. (NYSE: DVA) and a leading provider of kidney care services, thanks its more than 3,200 social workers and dietitians for their critical efforts in advancing patient care. The month of March marks both National Social Work Month and National Nutrition Month and the specialized services that social workers and dietitians offer in the health care field.
During March, in honor of DaVita social workers and dietitians, the company holds dozens of meetings to invite social workers and dietitians to come together and be recognized for their outstanding contributions to the DaVita “Village” (company).
“Through their endless support and by helping to ease many of the worries patients and their loved ones face, social workers and dietitians represent two of the greatest assets a patient has in dialysis,” said Debbie Benner, vice president of clinical support at DaVita. “We are pleased to recognize these two invaluable groups of individuals who improve the quality of life for our dialysis patients each and every day.”
Social workers take holistic care to heart as they listen to and advocate for each patient’s emotional, psychosocial and physical health. Social workers help patients help themselves as they adjust to a chronic illness. Teaching patients about kidney disease and their treatment options–including possible transplantation–helps patients understand and make informed decisions about their care. In addition, social workers are instrumental in assisting with insurance questions and coordinating travel arrangements for patients. Social workers educate and support patients to help them enjoy a better quality of life.
Dietitians work regularly with patients to guide their dietary choices and create healthy meal plans for specific health needs. Chronic kidney disease requires significant diet modifications, which include monitoring fluids and key nutritional levels such as sodium, phosphorus and potassium. By educating patients, dietitians can help patients avoid complications and improve clinical outcomes.