Dialysis is a medical procedure that acts as an artificial kidney by removing waste from the blood and excess fluids from the body when kidney failure or disease prevents them from do so. Dialysis technicians are responsible for operating the machines that do this and monitoring the patients undergoing treatment.
Dialysis technicians follow strict protocols to guarantee safe and effective outcomes for patients undergoing this four-hour procedure. Their most important tasks are to monitor and adjust fluid removal rate according to patient vital signs and to minimize the possibility of infection through proper equipment handling and sterilization.
Hemodialysis Technician Program Course Descriptions
Introduction to Dialysis: This course Introduces students to the field of hemodialysis. Kidney disease and its treatments, both historical and current, will be discussed. Professionalism in the field will be emphasized.
Anatomy & Physiology: This course provides a continuation of the comprehensive study of the anatomy and physiology of the human body. Topics include the endocrine, cardiovascular, lymphatic, respiratory, digestive, urinary, and reproductive systems as well as metabolism, nutrition, acid-base balance, and fluid and electrolyte balance. Upon completion, students should be able to demonstrate an in-depth understanding of principles of anatomy and physiology and their interrelationships. Laboratory work includes dissection of preserved specimens, microscopic study, physiologic experiments, computer simulations, and multimedia presentations.
Phlebotomy I: This course presents the principles and practices of laboratory specimen collection and processing. Also covers medical terminology, infection control, patient identification, anatomy and physiology, anticoagulants, blood collection, specimen processing and interpersonal skills.
Phlebotomy II: This course continues with the principles and practices of laboratory specimen collection and processing from HT103 (Phlebotomy I). The course introduces students to vascular access for hemodialysis.
Fundamentals of Dialysis I: This course provides students with an understanding of scientific and dialysis principles, such as osmosis and diffusion, and how they are applied in dialysis treatment. Devices required for dialysis and the theory of dialysis will also be discussed. The course provides students with an introduction to the process of initiating dialysis. The procedures and complications associated with the initiation of dialysis are discussed along with the types of vascular accesses. Infection control and prevention are emphasized. Students will practice the steps for initiating dialysis during this course.
Fundamentals of Dialysis II: This course focuses on water treatment and the functions of dialysis, including dialyzer reprocessing. An understanding of the water treatment components their function and required AAMI Standards as it pertains to the function of the water treatment facility will be
Clinical Practicum I (Lab): This course requires students to participate in lab and clinical experiences with patients and technologists at an approved ESRD center or hospital with ESRD facilities. This practicum will include an orientation to the clinical or facility, the operation of dialysis machine (limited to assemble and disassemble), gathering supplies for dialysis treatment, verification of the treatment plan, and preparation of the delivery system. Students must be prepared and willing to participate on any shift that may be required to complete this practicum experience.
Clinical Practicum II (Lab): This course requires students to participate in lab and clinical experiences with patients and technologists at an approved ESRD center or hospital with ESRD facilities. This practicum will include reinforcement of the skill sets learned in Clinical Practicum I. In addition, students will demonstrate their skills in pre-dialysis patient assessment, evaluation and preparation of the internal vascular access for needle insertion. Students must be prepared and willing to participate on any shift that may be required to complete this practicum experience.
Clinical Practicum III (Externship): This course requires students to participate in a 40 hour lab and 80 hour clinical experience with patients and technologists at an approved ESRD center or hospital with ESRD facilities. This practicum will include an evaluation of competency in the skill sets learned in Clinical Practicum I and II. In addition, students will demonstrate their ability to initiate hemodialysis with a catheter and participate in dialysis reprocessing unit orientation.