Peer Support

Tyneside Kidney Patients Association

What is peer support?

Peer support aims to provide support for kidney patients, their families or carers by providing an opportunity to talk to an experienced kidney patient on a one-to-one basis.

Who are peer supporters?

Peer supporters are unpaid kidney patient volunteers. They have completed formal training to offer one-to-one support and have undergone a number of checks – including a criminal records check – to enable them to do this.

How can I meet a peer supporter?

Should you require information on Peer Support please contact Glenda Bestford [email protected]

Will I have anything in common with my supporter?

Yes: you will share your common experiences as a kidney patient. If you wish, you can ask to be put in touch with someone of a similar age or background, or someone undergoing a specific type of treatment.

Can I request peer support at any time?

Yes, as a kidney patient there may be many times when you may wish to talk to a peer supporter, such as:

when you are first given your diagnosis

when you are considering treatment choices

any time that you feel it may be helpful to talk to another patient.

Is peer support confidential?

All discussions between yourself and the peer supporter will be treated sensitively. However, the peer supporter is obliged to speak to a kidney doctor or nurse if they feel that you or someone else is at risk of harm.

What can peer supporters not offer?

Peer supporters cannot offer advice about medical treatments. You should get medical advice from a health professional such as:

your GP

your kidney doctor

your kidney nurse

an appropriate member of the healthcare team.

Peer supporters cannot offer counselling. Professional psychological help and counselling are available through the healthcare team or by contacting the renal.

The service is offered to patients when they attend the pre-dialysis education session with the Specialist Nurse, patient information leaflets are available from the Specialist Nurse.