What Does a Dialysis Technician Do?

What Does a Dialysis Technician Do?

By Manhattan Institute
Posted in Dialysis Technician
On February 08, 2016

Dialysis is the process by which toxins are removed from the body when the kidneys stop working. Many people looking to enter the healthcare field consider becoming a dialysis technician, the person who monitors this process. Because the training period is short, and the field is growing, this is a great way to get started in healthcare. But what does a dialysis technician do?

In the following sections, we will answer many questions about what dialysis techs do including: Where do dialysis technicians work? What is a dialysis technician’s primary responsibility? and What other responsibilities does a dialysis technician have?

Where do dialysis technicians work?

Dialysis technicians can work in many settings, but their jobs tend to be pretty consistent within workplace environments. Many dialysis technicians work in hospitals, doctor’s offices, and labs. Still others work in home dialysis programs or on-site dialysis locations. Because dialysis technicians work in so many different places, it is easy for you to find the right work environment to fit your needs.

What is a dialysis technician’s primary responsibility?

The dialysis technician’s primary responsibility is to make sure that the dialysis machine is sterile and working. Before dialysis, he or she will assemble the machine, make sure it is clean and working. During dialysis, the technician will check anticoagulant and fluid rates and adjust them as needed.  After dialysis, the technician will disconnect the machine and clean it. In addition, many dialysis technicians work directly with the patients and are responsible for checking patient’s chart and vitals, administering local anaesthesia, inserting the needle, and responding to any alarms or emergencies that may come up.

What other responsibilities does a dialysis technician have?

Most dialysis technicians spend quite a bit of time with their patients. Having a good bedside manner, being dedicated to patient education, and having the patience to deal with people who may not understand the process are imperative for those seeking to become a dialysis technician. Dialysis technicians will also be communicating with other members of the care team such as nurses and doctors, so strong communication skills are a necessity.

By the time that patients need dialysis, their kidneys have already stopped functioning. Dialysis prolongs their life for anywhere from 1 to 30 years depending on the case with most people seeing at least a 2 year extension to their life. Most patients are able to maintain a high quality of life while undergoing treatment.

As a dialysis technician, you will likely work with the same people week after week, getting to know them. Over time, you will watch as they either receive kidney transplants or their condition worsens. While it is difficult to watch someone who is sick eventually pass away, you will be able to know that you played a crucial role in extending their life. Moreover, you will experience the joys of seeing those who receive kidney transplants improving.

Are you interested in becoming a dialysis technician?. At Manhattan Institute, we offer a hands-on dialysis technician program.