Kidney care in our community just took a leap forward with the official launch of a Diabetes Kidney Disease (DKD) Clinic, which was created in partnership with University Health Network (UHN).

For Kidney Month, Scarborough Health Network (SHN) held an event celebrating the official launch of a new kidney disease clinic in partnership with University Health Network (UHN). SHN’s Regional Nephrology Program cares for more than 6,000 patients every year and is one of 27 Regional Multi-Care Kidney Clinics (MCKC) in Ontario. We also house a comprehensive Diabetes Education Program designed to empower and provide diabetes care, including self-management tools to people living with diabetes to lead the healthiest lives they can.

With the launch of the DKD Clinic, SHN expands our already robust kidney and diabetes services to various patients in our community. SHN connected our Regional Nephrology Program with UHN’s nephrology services to provide efficient and quality care to patients from a skilled and educated group of medical professionals.

Dr. Paul Tam, Chief and Medical Director of Regional Nephrology program, SHN, and Dr. Chris Chan, Deputy Physician in Chief and Divisional Director of Nephrology, UHN, came together in this collaboration to develop the clinic based on the needs of diabetic kidney disease patients in Scarborough and beyond.

When speaking at the event, Dr. Chan highlighted the pioneering benefits of this collaboration as it allows patients to meet with a specific nephrologist and endocrinologist during their appointment.

“Establishing an integrated fellowship between UHN and SHN holds profound significance in advancing healthcare. By bridging the expertise of our institutions, the clinic can address the intricate interplay between cardiac, renal, and metabolic disorders and offer patients holistic care plans at once, eliminating the need for separate visits,” said Dr. Chan.

“This collaboration not only enhances clinical management, but also fosters ground-breaking research and innovative treatment modalities. This fellowship cultivates a team of specialists equipped to navigate the complexities of diabetic and renal conditions intermingling, ultimately elevating the standard of care and improving patient outcomes across our community and beyond.”

Dr. Tam spoke to the value of creating a space that allows physicians and other clinical staff to hone and refine diabetic and nephrological care, allowing them to treat our patients with quality care based on shared experience and knowledge. In working with Dr. Chan and our skilled Nephrology team, SHN and UHN were able to curate such a hub of learning and essential care.

“At the beginning of my career, I was focused on making sure my patients had access to dialysis. At this point in my journey, I am doing my best to prevent my patients from having to start dialysis in the first place,” said Dr. Tam. “Diabetes is now the leading cause of kidney failure globally, and this clinic we’ve created in partnership with UHN will ensure our community is receiving treatment targeting the root cause to reduce the chance of kidney disease earlier on.”

“I’m also excited that our program has already attracted new physician trainees, who want to learn more about managing diabetes and providing renal care. In training the next generation of care providers, we are building a better future for those afflicted by diabetes and kidney disease in Scarborough.”

The clinic is accessed when family physicians refer patients to our nephrology specialists at SHN, who then assess if the patient requires specialized care at the DKD Clinic.

Join us as we shine a spotlight on this transformative collaborative as it expands SHN’s Regional Nephrology Program and diabetic care services. Together, we’re shaping the future of care, one innovative clinic at a time.