A NEW centre for people being treated for kidney disease has opened its doors to its first patients.

The John Sagar Renal Centre, in the Briercliffe shopping parade in Burnley, provides haemodialysis treatment and outpatient clinic facilities for patients from across East Lancashire.

It has 24 stations and replaces the existing 15-station unit at Burnley General Hospital and a satellite unit in Accrington.

The unit has been named in tribute to East Lancashire man John Sagar, the former chairman of the Lancashire and South Cumbria Kidney Patients Association.

Haemodialysis is a treatment to remove waste products and extra fluid from the blood and is given to patients whose kidneys have stopped working properly.

Work has started on a purpose-built new renal centre on the Royal Blackburn Hospital site, scheduled to open in spring 2022. It will have 24 dialysis stations, with 18 parking spaces.

Improvements to facilities in East Lancashire are being overseen by Lancashire Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, responsible for renal services across Lancashire and South Cumbria, which has awarded a seven-year contract to Diaverum Facilities Management to deliver the service.

Dr Mark Brady, Lancashire Teaching Hospitals clinical director for renal medicine, said: “Opening this new centre in Burnley is the latest stage of an exciting series of developments in the service provided to people with kidney disease.

“We have worked closely with patients throughout the project to ensure our facilities meet their needs, and are delighted to be able to welcome them to this new unit.

“Patients who need dialysis treatment in centres like this are with us for many hours each week, so it is important to us that they can access treatment in comfortable, high-quality surroundings.

“The unit has been named in honour of the late John Sagar in recognition of the honest feedback he always gave us and his dedication in driving us forward as a service. John was a devoted leader who worked tirelessly to improve the care and experience offered to people living with kidney disease across the region.”

Diaverum facilities management managing director Michael Hartnett said: “Our new East Lancashire centres have been designed to enable maximum accessibility, bringing treatment closer to home for all patients including those with specific mobility or infection control needs.

“We are delighted to have welcomed patients to this new centre in Burnley, and look forward to the completion of the Blackburn site.”