Questions for Patrick Henry
Would you tell us a little about yourself?
- Senior Manager, UltraCare Customer Connection Services. I manage the staff and operations of Fresenius Medical Care’s Patient Travel Service.
Where are some of the destinations you have arranged travel for patients?
- Some popular destinations in the U.S. include Las Vegas, New Orleans, Chicago and the Smoky Mountains. Internationally, patients travel near and far, from Costa Rica to Spain and Asia.
Do you have favorite destinations you like to have patients visit?
- We just like to see them traveling to their favorite locations for fun and relaxation.
How do you arrange dialysis treatments for patients while they are traveling?
- At Fresenius Medical Care Patient Travel Service we take the initial travel request, and then begin collecting information, locating clinics and coordinating with admissions offices. Since Fresenius Medical Care has over 1800 clinics we make sure to get the request to the proper admissions office for placement.
Do you work with specific dialysis providers in various locations?
- We take pride in placing patients in Fresenius Medical Care clinics. However, if one of our locations is not convenient to the destination, we will seek other clinics for solutions.
Do you help plan travel for patients who use a variety of dialysis methods? Hemo, PD, Home dialysis etc?
- Yes, we welcome all modalities and can assist with travel needs and questions. In addition we have contacts and support for supplies and products.
Do you connect the traveling patient with an emergency provider if needed?
- Traveling patients are always connected to a host dialysis provider and while the patient is visiting, they are covered by the emergency provisions of the hosting provider.
Are there financial challenges when arranging dialysis outside of a patient's home unit?
- Early in our process, we work with our billing offices to verify coverage and identify potential costs a patient may incur. Although charges may occur, we try our best to inform the patient ahead of time.
Do most dialysis providers accommodate travelers?
- Yes, most do, and at Fresenius Medical Care Patient Travel Service we keep an up-to-date list of clinics in the United States and around the world.
What should the dialysis patient consider before traveling?
- Always discuss the specifics of the trip with their dialysis care team so they have the right amount of medications to last the length of the trip.
Plan ahead: 30 days for domestic travel and 8 weeks for international travel are always good timelines.
What questions should the patient ask before traveling?
- It always good to know how far the clinic is from their vacation spot, so they are aware of the distance.
How can the patient make your job easier and make their travel more pleasant?
- When they have information such as their destination, treatment dates, home clinic and date of birth, it will make the process go smoother.
Any other tips for the patient, family or dialysis provider?
- Always call the clinic you are visiting 24-48 hours before the first treatment to confirm details. Sometimes flexibility can be a great asset.