Big Red Kidney Bus delivers holiday dialysis to Nelson Bay holiday makers

KNOCK OUT: The Big Red Kidney Bus has been an award winner. Now it's come to Nelson Bay.
KNOCK OUT: The Big Red Kidney Bus has been an award winner. Now it's come to Nelson Bay.

Holidays can be a nightmare, even impossible, for people on dialysis. 

The Big Red Kidney Bus makes it possible and it’s at Nelson Bay throughout July.

“It’s the first time the bus has visited Nelson Bay and significantly it’s the first year the bus program has been in NSW,” Kidney Health Australia CEO Mikaela Stafrace said.

“Dialysis is a debilitating and restrictive regime, and it can be extremely difficult for those with end-stage kidney disease to take a holiday.

The bus rolled into Halifax Holiday Park on July 3 and won’t leave until August 12.

“On average, dialysis patients need to have treatment for up to five hours at a time, three days a week, and holiday dialysis chair-availability is very limited around Australia,” Ms Stafrace said. 

The Big Red Kidney Bus is a world first, caring for up to six people each week.

Launched in Victoria in 2014 and in 2015 it won the National Disability Award for Excellence in Community Accessibility, and the Gold Innovative Models of Care Award at the 2015 Victorian Public Health Care Awards.

“Since 2014, holiday destinations in Victoria have been available to Australians on haemodialysis,” Ms Stafrace said.

“Now with two buses in the program, beautiful NSW destinations such as Nelson Bay, Coffs Harbour, Ballina and Umina Beach will be available to dialysis patients.”

To find out about the opportunities to get involved with the Big Red Kidney Bus in your town and educate your local community about chronic kidney disease, dialysis and the Big Red Kidney Bus program, email


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