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Baxter Kidney Patient Education Program Celebrates Tenth Anniversary
Date:11/5/2007

Hands-on program has educated nearly 80,000 patients in over 30 states on

chronic kidney disease and treatment options since 1997

DEERFIELD, Ill., Nov. 5 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- This week marks the tenth anniversary of Baxter Healthcare Corporation's Kidney Patient Educator (KPE) program, an ambitious project that has provided credible, timely information on chronic kidney disease (CKD) and treatment options to nearly 80,000 kidney disease patients in over 30 states since it began in 1997.

Started as a small pilot support program to supplement education by nephrologists (specialized physicians trained in the diagnosis and management of kidney disease), Baxter's KPE program provides kidney disease patients with access to a licensed healthcare professional who can provide unbiased information about the disease and treatments, as well as one-on-one emotional support.

Typically, a CKD patient's physician will contact a Baxter KPE to "enroll" patients in regularly scheduled seminars or one-on-one meetings. To provide this personalized, face-to-face service across the country, each Baxter KPE covers multiple states and can sometimes drive up to 3,000 miles a month reaching out to patients. Meetings can be held in venues as large as a hotel ballroom and as small as a private office in a doctor's clinic, and a KPE may have to speak English, Spanish or French, and depending on the audience, all three in the same meeting.

"Many patients are overwhelmed when they are told they have CKD. They think that it's the end of the world because they have to go on dialysis and don't know what to expect," says Justine Barbour, RN, a KPE based in the Washington, D.C./Baltimore area. "We let them know that dialysis is not a death sentence - it's an opportunity to keep living. We clear up misconceptions about CKD and treatment options, provide them an opportunity to ask questions and share reliable information in an understandable way."

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SOURCE Baxter International Inc.
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