For the first time, members of our local community receiving life-saving dialysis treatment for kidney disease or damage will soon be able to be treated in Lunenburg County.

A new 12-chair, 5,600 square foot Dialysis Unit is coming to South Shore Regional Hospital as part of the $115.7-million redevelopment project announced by the Province in 2020.

The dialysis unit will be a bright, modern and patient-friendly with lots of natural light. It will be a comfortable, uplifting place for patients who must spend hours at a time receiving treatment.

This unit is a significant service addition at South Shore Regional Hospital. It will help alleviate pressure on the dialysis treatment resources in the Central Zone while also providing the capacity to treat an increasing numbers of patients from our region.

Dialysis usually requires patients to be connected to a dialysis machine for a minimum of a few hours, multiple times per week. Currently dialysis patients from our region travel to Halifax or Liverpool for their dialysis sessions. For many that means asking a family member or a neighbor or hiring someone to drive them to their three weekly sessions, for months and sometimes years.

SSRH Redevelopment Project Co-Lead and SSRH Operations Site Lead Rob Zwicker says having dialysis services as an option at South Shore Regional will allow patients to stay in their community for treatment.

“We are thrilled the Redevelopment Project will bring Dialysis to our hospital. Renal Dialysis treatment is a significant time commitment for patients and their families. Bringing this service closer to home will lead to an improved patient experience and improved quality of life.”

Dialysis Patient Melinda Naugler is very pleased to learn the treatment will be available in Bridgewater.

“Travelling two hours to Halifax for dialysis was brutal, especially the winter driving. By the end of my 3-hour treatment I would be so exhausted, both physically and mentally, I was not able to drive myself home. The addition of travel cost added a layer of financial stress to an already difficult time.”

Today there are 3 million Canadians who have kidney damage or reduced kidney function. Patients can develop renal failure as a complication of diabetes, hypertension, cancer, trauma or even because of a hereditary condition.

The Health Services Foundation of the South Shore is very excited and committed to supporting the South Shore Regional Hospital Redevelopment Project. It will have more news to share on its volunteer-led fundraising effort in the coming months.

Media Contact:

Alison Clements

Manager, Strategic Engagement

Health Services Foundation of the South Shore