Nurses and patient care technicians are on the front lines in the multiple short-term and long-term dialysis units that are caring for patients who may have COVID-19. Dialysis patients and staff have been hit hard by this virus, with more than 6000 patients and more than 700 staff members receiving positive test results as of April 21, 2020. More than 790 dialysis patients have died as a result of COVID-19.
Seattle was the initial locus of the virus, and the first death in the United States was that of a dialysis patient. New York City then became the “leader” in this horrible “contest,” with the most cases identified.
Nurse leaders in Seattle and New York City were asked to respond to questions about their experience, challenges, and advice for others. Liz McNamara, MN, RN, is vice president of patient care services and chief nursing officer for Northwest Kidney Centers in Seattle; Diane Morris, MS, MR, CNN, is director of nursing and clinical services for the Rogosin Institute in New York City.