Hospital policies that prevent physicians from providing hemodialysis to undocumented immigrants with end-stage kidney disease except in emergency cases cause physicians to feel moral distress and drive them toward burnout, according to findings published in Annals of Internal Medicine.
“In the United States, nearly half of undocumented immigrants with end-stage kidney disease receive hemodialysis only when they are evaluated in an [ED] and are found to have life-threatening renal failure (“emergency-only hemodialysis”),” Lilia Cervantes, MD, from Denver Health and University of Colorado, and colleagues wrote. “These patients experience psychosocial distress and much higher mortality than patients receiving regularly scheduled hemodialysis, but little is known about how providing [emergency-only hemodialysis] affects the clinicians involved.”
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