KAMLOOPS - Students of Thompson Rivers University's school of nursing are educating their community about renal health on March 13, 2014, World
With a focus on disease prevention and awareness, community organizations will gather at Northills Centre mall with interactive displays that encourage the public to learn more about kidney health.
"Raising awareness of kidney disease goes a long way toward helping British Columbians make choices that protect their health," said Health Minister Terry Lake. "Early detection of kidney disease, combined with a healthy lifestyle, can often prevent the need for dialysis or transplant. I congratulate the TRU nursing students for their proactive efforts on behalf of British Columbians."
It is estimated that one in 10 British Columbians are affected by kidney disease. Of the nearly 13,000 patients registered on B.C.'s provincial renal database, over 3,000 require dialysis to stay alive.
"Kidney disease can often go unnoticed until the effects have reached an advanced stage," said Dr. Florriann Fehr, spokesperson for the school of nursing. "We want the community to be informed about risk factors, like diabetes and high blood pressure, so that kidney disease can be caught early and treated effectively."
This year's World Kidney Day focuses on chronic kidney disease and aging. Kidney disease can develop at any age, but kidney function begins to steadily decrease after the age of 40.
"Many chronic diseases are interlinked and share common risk factors. High blood pressure and diabetes can contribute to the development of both heart disease and chronic kidney disease," said Dr. Gavin Arthur, vice president, Research and Health Promotion, BC & Yukon Heart and Stroke Foundation, "Helping members of the public understand both the significance of kidney disease and how to reduce these risk factors, and the importance of regular screening, is vital to prevent these debilitating conditions."
The Thompson Rivers University nursing students, along with representatives from the Canadian National Institute for the Blind, the Heart and Stroke Foundation, the Big Little Science Centre, the Brain Injury Association and others, will be participating in this event from 10:30 a.m. - 2:30 p.m., March 13, 2014, at the Northills Centre mall in Kamloops.
The BC Renal Agency plans and co-ordinates health care services for patients with kidney disease in B.C. The agency works with a provincewide network of renal care providers to support new programs, research and education with a goal of improving the quality of life for those living with kidney disease.
For more information on the Thompson Rivers University kidney event and World Kidney Day visit: www.worldkidneyday.org
Are you at risk of kidney disease? Find out more about kidney health and access an online self-assessment tool at: www.kidneysmart.com