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Abstract: FR-PO447

"Dialysis Makes You Poor and Keeps You Poor": Patient Perspectives on Health-Related Social Needs and Recommendations for Interventions

Session Information

Category: Dialysis

  • 801 Dialysis: Hemodialysis and Frequent Dialysis


  • Novick, Tessa Kimberly, The University of Texas at Austin, Austin, Texas, United States
  • Osuna-Diaz, Michelle Marie, The University of Texas at Austin, Austin, Texas, United States
  • Ramirez, Daniel, The University of Texas at Austin, Austin, Texas, United States
  • Barrios, Francisco A., The University of Texas at Austin, Austin, Texas, United States
  • Crews, Deidra C., Johns Hopkins Medicine, Baltimore, Maryland, United States
  • Jacobs, Elizabeth, MaineHealth, Portland, Maine, United States

Dialysis patients with low socioeconomic status have worse outcomes, which may be due to health-related social needs. Patient perspectives on the impact of social needs and how to address them have not been explored.


We interviewed 32 people with low socioeconomic status receiving in-center hemodialysis on barriers and facilitators to care with an emphasis on social needs. The interviews were conducted at three dialysis facilities in Austin, Texas, from April to July 2022. We collected demographic information, and performed thematic analysis using the constant comparative method on interviews after they were audio-recorded, translated and transcribed verbatim.


Participants were mean (SD) age 56 (12) years, 18 (56%) identified as female, 15 (53%) identified as Hispanic/Latino/a/x, 30 (94%) were unemployed, 27 (94%) reported annual income <$25,000, and health-related social needs were common. Themes identified were (1) kidney failure was unexpected, (2) dialysis is detrimental, (3) powerlessness, (4) financial resource strain, (5) motivators, and (6) interventions should promote self sufficiency (Figure).


Dialysis exacerbates financial resource strain, and social needs exacerbate dialysis-related stress. Participants made recommendations to address social needs with an emphasis on increasing financial support and community resources for this population.

Figure. Themes and subthemes from semi-structured interviews.


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