A new website dedicated to people with kidney disease in Wales has been launched, offering support to hundreds of families in both English and Welsh. www.peoplelikeuscymru.org

On World Day Kidney, the Kidney Wales Foundation launched People Like Us Cymru, a patient-led support website designed specifically for Welsh kidney patients and their families.

The site, which will be launched alongside patients undergoing dialysis at the renal unit at St Woolas Hospital in Newport, will include easy-to-understand information about dialysis and kidney disease; an interactive forum as well as tips and advice from patients themselves.

Website editor and patient advocate Melanie Wager who had a kidney transplant last year said:
“Patients in Wales have been telling us there is a need for dedicated resource where they can find information about all aspects of kidney disease and a forum where they can share their concerns with others who are going through the same thing,” she said.

“Like most illnesses, no one really understands unless they’ve been through it themselves and only kidney patients themselves can really know what it’s like to endure dialysis week after week in the hope of a transplant.
“Through my own experience with kidney disease I know how important it is that patients, as well as their families and friends have a resource they can turn to for ideas and advice. People Like Us Cymru is run by people like us, for people like us – who really do understand what it’s like.”

Some of the features of the People Like Us Cymru website include:
*An Interactive forum – a space to share concerns 24 hours a day
*Jargon Buster – making sense of medical terms and helping patients take charge of their own treatment
*Ask the Expert – a chance to put clinicians, nurses and other health professionals on the spot
*Top Tips – tried and tested by patients themselves from planning a meal in your favourite restaurant, to asking questions at the doctors’ and handy hints on home cooking.
*Your Stories – a chance to share experiences and give hope to others
Chairman of the Kidney Wales Foundation Roy J Thomas said: “I am delighted to launch this new website today to help provide support and advice to the hundreds of families in Wales who are living with kidney disease.
“This website builds on what was achieved during the People Like Us campaign in 2007, which highlighted the needs of kidney patients in Wales and, like that campaign, it will be informed by what patients want and need to help them through their treatment.”

To view the website log on to www.peoplelikeuscymru.org
ends

Notes for Editors:
*The launch of the People Like Us Cymru website took place at the renal unit in St Woolas Hospital in Newport at 10am on Thursday March 10th 2011.

*More information about World Kidney Day at http://www.worldkidneyday.org/
Kidney Facts:
*Assembly Government figures estimate there are around 10,000 people with renal disease in Wales and the numbers needing dialysis are increasing.
*Nearly 500 patients are waiting for a transplant in Wales. A crisis of organ supply transplant faces all parts of the UK.
*Surveys show that 70% of people want to donate their organs after death but only 22% are on the NHS Organ Donor Register.
*All Welsh adult transplants take place at the University Hospital of Wales in Cardiff. Children’s transplants are conducted outside Wales.A new website dedicated to people with kidney disease in Wales has been launched, offering support to hundreds of families in both English and Welsh. www.peoplelikeuscymru.org

On World Day Kidney, the Kidney Wales Foundation launched People Like Us Cymru, a patient-led support website designed specifically for Welsh kidney patients and their families.

The site, which will be launched alongside patients undergoing dialysis at the renal unit at St Woolas Hospital in Newport, will include easy-to-understand information about dialysis and kidney disease an interactive forum as well as tips and advice from patients themselves.

Website editor and patient advocate Melanie Wager who had a kidney transplant last year said: