Baxter service specialist Pedro Perez routinely delivers life-saving and -sustaining peritoneal dialysis (PD) solutions and supplies into the homes of patients. One day late in 2020, he was called upon to take extraordinary steps to save a life.
“As soon as I came in the door, I knew something wasn't right,” Pedro said. “The patient walked to the dining room table and leaned on it; her legs were shaking. I put down my supplies to check on her."
She was suffering a medical episode related to her blood sugar and was unable to communicate. Pedro slowly helped guide her into a sitting position on the floor before calling 911.
Emergency responders arrived and were able to boost her blood sugar. Pedro then stayed with her for about an hour to make sure she was safe, before finishing her delivery and returning to his route.
"The responders told me it could have been a lot worse if I hadn’t been here," Pedro said.
Pedro said his work at Baxter aligns with his calling to help people. While he hasn't experienced a situation like this before, he is glad that he was there to help. The two reunited a month later when Pedro made a delivery to the patient, who was able to thank him in person.
Pedro said he did what any other person would have done in that situation. However, he acknowledges his work uniquely puts him in a caregiving role that allows him to routinely check in on the patients on his route – and he doesn’t take that lightly.
"I just had a patient say, 'you’re like a light every time you deliver,'" he said. "When I walk in, it's almost like I'm family."
People living with kidney failure require regular dialysis treatments (either hemodialysis three days a week in a dialysis clinic or PD in their home) or a kidney transplant to stay alive. PD is typically managed by patients in their home, at a time of day that is convenient for them. During the pandemic home dialysis has become the preferred method of dialysis, as it also supports patients' ability to more safely social distance.