Access Top 10 Priorities (priority setting in association with the JLA)

A final workshop was held 25th July 2021 and brought together patients and healthcare professionals to jointly agree a priority list for vascular access research.

  1. What can be done to make fistulas or grafts last as long as possible?
  2. What staff education is needed to help them to understand the experience of patients living with a dialysis line, graft or fistula?
  3. What education do patients need to be given about living with and looking after a dialysis line, graft or fistula and the effect this may have on their quality of life?
  4. What can be done to avoid narrow segments from forming in fistulas or grafts?
  5. Is a fistula always the best option for all patients who need dialysis,regardless of age?
  6. What do patients need to know about the risk of having many procedures to place new fistulas, grafts and dialysis lines and the possibility of damage to the blood circulation system?
  7. What features of a fistula or graft make it better or worse at providing dialysis?
  8. What can be done to prevent fistulas becoming enlarged or at risk of a serious bleed?
  9. What can be done to make needling of grafts and fistulas more accurate to lower the risk of problems?
  10. What can be done to prevent infections related to dialysis lines?

The following questions were also discussed and put in order of priority at the workshop:

  1. What can be done to make the needling of a fistula or graft less painful?
  2. What do patients need to know about the risks and benefits of keeping a fistula that is not being used anymore?
  3. What can be done to prevent swelling in the arm with a fistula or graft?
  4. Does having the same staff needling the fistula help to make it last longer and improve the experience of dialysis?
  5. Does it always have to be a doctor who puts in a line for dialysis or could a properly trained nurse or other member of staff do this instead?