Outrage after ‘lifeline’ day trips for Sheffield dialysis patients are cancelled

A former Sheffield kidney patient is demanding to know why ‘lifeline’ day trips for people on dialysis have come to an end.

By Dan Hayes
Tuesday, 02 April, 2019, 14:06

Raymond Haynes was a patient at the Sheffield Dialysis Unit in Heeley for 10 years, until he had a kidney transplant in May 2017.

During that time, trips to the seaside and other attractions - which were funded by patients but supported by staff - regularly attracted more than 100 people on two coaches.

Raymond Haynes.

But on a recent visit to the centre, Raymond was told by another patient that the trips had been brought to an end, with no explanation given as to why.

Mr Haynes, aged 54, said: “It is ridiculous. I went to that dialysis unit for 10 years and those trips are a lifeline.

“We went to Whitby, Scarborough, Bridlington, the Yorkshire Wildlife Park and Llandudno.

“It is a real shame that these patients are going to be stopped from doing it. They will be missing out.”

Mr Haynes said the trips were especially valuable for dialysis patients as the procedure can make traditional holidays almost impossible.

“It is a nightmare organising holidays when you have dialysis,” he said.

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“You have to do your dialysis every other day and these trips were one of the few things that people had to look forward to.”

“They weren’t costing the NHS anything and no real reason has been given.

“I just don’t understand why they have done it.”

Mr Haynes said the patients raised the money for the trips by holding raffles and other charity events, and he even raised £1,000 for them after he received his donor kidney two years ago.

He said he now wants an explanation as to why the trips have been stopped, calling the decision ‘heartless’ and ‘upsetting’.

Dr Sarah Jenkins, clinical director for renal services, Sheffield Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, said: “A group of patients organise the annual day trip rather than the dialysis unit itself and therefore we have not made any decisions to cancel the trips.

“For a number of reasons including increased demand for clinical care at the unit, we need to change the role our staff have played in the past regarding these events but we are still incredibly supportive of them going ahead and we are discussing with a patient group how best to take things forward.”