WALKING FOR AWARENESS: Armidale mother-of-three Nicki Scholes-Robertson will begin her three week trek from Armidale to Sydney next month. Photo: Rachel Baxter.It’safour hour drive to John Hunter Hospital, six to Prince Alfred andaround 12 hours a week is spent on dialysis.
NickiScholes-Robertson knows the route all too well.
The mother-of-three went into renal failure at the end of 2013.
Now, she will walk from Armidale to Sydney to raise awareness for renal diseaseand for those suffering in the bush.
“For any kind of transplant, Newcastle or Sydney are the closest and the walk identifies the distance,” she said.
“Then wehave to spend three months post-transplant in a major centre.
“It’s just one of those things that people don’t know a lot about (and) I want people to realise what’s involved.”
Mrs Scholes-Robertson said she was one of the “lucky” ones.
“My little brother gave me a kidney at the end of 2014,” she said.
“So I’ve been doing some work with the local Armidale Kidney Club.
“I do a lot of work trying to support the Armidale Renal Unit at the hospital and other people with renal disease.
“I was doing a lot of little fundraisers … eventually I thought ‘I’m just going to do a big one’ and I felt very strongly about emphasising how far away we are from major hospitals.”
KIDNEY HEALTH AWARENESS: Armidale Hospital’s renal team sell finger buns earlier this year to raise awareness for Kidney Health .
Half of the money raised from the walk will go to Armidale’s Renal Unit and the other 50 per cent will be donated to the Royal Prince Alfred Hospital’sTransplant Institute.
“They do research into kidney and liver transplants,” she said.
Mrs Scholes-Robertson said Armidale’s Renal Unit hassix chairs and is operational six days a week.
“We are lucky enough to have a really good renal physician here and we’ve got a social worker and dietitian just for renal disease,” she said.
“We’ve also got quite a few people at home.”
Mrs Scholes-Robertson did dialysis from home but had to train up inTamworth.
“People still die waiting for organ transplants at the moment,” she said.
The average waiting time to receive a transplant is three years, according to Kidney Health .
Mrs Scholes-Robertson said some people can be waiting 10 years or more.
“It very much depends on your blood type,” she said.
“I’m O-negative and it is the hardest because we can give an organ to anybody but we can only receive an O-negative.
“Some people can’t have transplants, they’re not eligible,because of other factors.
“There’s no cure at all for renal disease.”
Nicki Scholes-RobertsonKidney health week in Armidale https://t苏州夜生活/LJi2bevQWe
— Rachel Baxter (@RachelBaxter_) March 7, 2017