Vern battles on despite dialysis
FOR 12 hours a week, retiree Vern Perry sits by a machine which filters his blood and keeps him alive.
It is a treatment the 77-year-old Mount Morgan man will withstand for the rest of his life after an enlarged prostate led to the breakdown of his kidneys and to dialysis 12 months ago.
"My kidneys are ruined, I only have half of one left so I come (to Rockhampton Hospital) three days a week to have my blood sucked out of me," he said.
"The treatment is absolutely excellent, I couldn't ask for more and the nurses are so dedicated, it's unbelievable."
Mr Perry said the prospect of travelling from Mount Morgan to Rockhampton by ambulance three days a week for dialysis for the rest of his life was a tough prospect to face.
"It is not worth living if you are not happy, it's logic," he said.
"I wrote to the head nurse and asked her to take me off dialysis because if you can't enjoy life why live.
"She told me to go away and think about it so I did some research into what would happen if I didn't have dialysis.
"I found if there was pain involved it was not worth it so I wrote another letter to the nurse to apologise."
While Mr Perry was continuing his life-saving dialysis treatment, he said the process could always be made more bearable for other patients as well as himself.
He said the ambulance transport from Mount Morgan to Rockhampton Hospital was uncomfortable and tiring.
"I get up at 5.30am to make certain I am ready for the ambulance in the morning," he said.
Acting Chief Superintendent of the Central Queensland Local Ambulance Service Network Steven Coombs said the service strived to continually "provide professional services to meet the needs of patients and community".
"The renal run that is mentioned in this complaint is served by either a Mercedes Sprinter 318 and or 319, which is designed to undertake these types of tasks," he said.
"I would very much like the opportunity to discuss this gentleman's concerns in person and be afforded the opportunity to undertake a review of our current service arrangements in relation to renal patients and our broader Patient Transport Service.
"This would then enable us to continue to strive for excellence in patient safety, continuum of care and efficiency of service."
Mr Coombs said a formal complaint about the service had not been received but he would be happy to discuss Mr Perry's concerns.