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Thrive On

Staying Employed While on Dialysis

Man staying employed on dialysis
Working full or part time while on dialysis can be a key part of creating a satisfying life. To help you balance your job and your treatment, your doctor can determine which type of dialysis will work best with your schedule.

Know your rights

Want to stay at your job or find a new one? Go for it. There are laws that protect your rights as a worker, like the Americans with Disabilities Act, the Family and Medical Leave Act, the Ticket to Work and Work Incentives Improvements Act and Social Security Work Incentive Programs. To learn more about any one of these laws, please see below, and "Get Details" will direct you to the appropriate external sites for additional information.
Americans with Disabilities Act
Requires companies of 15 or more employees to provide reasonable accommodations to qualified people with disabilities, which may include time off for dialysis or extra breaks.

Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA)
Requires companies of 50 or more employees to provide up to 12 weeks of unpaid leave to its employees to take care of their health or a loved one’s health. Qualified employees can take 12 weeks all at once or in separate blocks of time.
Ticket to Work and Work Incentives Improvements Act
Allows states to provide Medicaid coverage to disabled workers, as well as Vocational Rehabilitation services from your state or a private employment network. Going on disability for end stage renal disease (ESRD) and receiving benefits does not prevent you from working.
Social Security Work Incentive Programs
Provide benefits for people who receive Supplemental Security Income (SSI) or Social Security Disability Income (SSDI).

Watch to learn about home dialysis.
Learn about the freedom of home dialysis

There are big benefits to home dialysis—it offers greater flexibility so you can keep the lifestyle you love. Find out if starting or switching to home dialysis is right for you.

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Get tips on talking about dialysis

Learn ways to communicate effectively about your health and what you're going through.

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3 helpful conversations to have about treatment

  1. Book circle icon
    Discuss dialysis and work schedules with your doctor and social worker. Your treatment team wants you to be able to keep a satisfying job and fulfill your work obligations. You may want to discuss peritoneal dialysis (PD) or at-home hemodialysis (HD) as an option. At-home dialysis offers you a more flexible schedule and PD even allows you to dialyze at work. You may also want to consider overnight (nocturnal) dialysis at one of our centers. Check with your social worker, since not every center offers nocturnal treatments.
  2. Handshake circle icon
    Educate your work supervisor. Depending on your work environment and your relationship with your supervisor, it may be helpful to let him or her know that you are undergoing dialysis. Remember, though, to use your discretion. You are not required to share your health information with your employer unless you wish to.

  3. People conversation icon
    Get advice from your social worker. Ask about ways to balance the dynamics of life, dialysis and working. Your social worker can help you find ways to master life on the job.