More must be done to reduce risk of acute kidney injury, conference hears

BMJ 2011; 343 doi: (Published 10 October 2011) Cite this as: BMJ 2011;343:d6522
  1. Lisa Hitchen
  1. 1London

Acute kidney injury is a “silent killer” that clinicians are unwittingly allowing patients to develop. Not until clinical staff get the basics right and more hospitals provide access to senior doctors seven days a week will the situation improve.

That was the message from speakers at a conference in London last week. Donal O’Donoghue, England’s national clinical director for kidney care, told delegates at the conference on improving outcomes and safety for the acutely ill patient that spotting risk factors, maintaining hydration, recognising deterioration, and seven day working across the health service were needed.

Dr O’Donoghue said that acute kidney injury was “the miner’s canary”—a marker of quality of acute care. “Acutely ill patients get AKI [acute kidney injury] because we don’t get the basics right. When we get [the basics] right for AKI, all acutely ill patients will benefit,” he told the conference.

Although statistics on incidence vary, …

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