37 years old - Greenville, North Carolina - Featured on September 29, 2010
Young Mother Balances Family, Work and Church
Arlette Whitaker is both a Fresenius Medical Care home therapy nurse as well as a dialysis patient herself.
Arlette Whitaker is grateful for the dialysis treatments that keep her alive so she can spend time with her family, including her husband and two active children. After becoming a dialysis patient, she grew passionate about helping others with kidney failure and encouraging them to live life to the fullest, and she became a home dialysis nurse.
Arlette, 37, likes to maintain an active lifestyle. In her role as a home therapy nurse at Fresenius Medical Care ECU Dialysis in Greenville, N.C., Arlette speaks from experience when she talks to patients — she herself has been receiving dialysis since Oct. 2007. She began dialysis the same year she started nursing school at Beaufort County Community College, and Arlette now says she has a great connection with her patients, because she relates to them on all levels.
With her busy schedule, Arlette wanted as much flexibility as possible with her dialysis treatments and decided on home therapy using peritoneal dialysis (PD).
An active member of the Greenville Community Christian Church, Arlette is part of the church’s medical ministry, children’s ministry and also volunteers for health screenings, blood drives, and other events. Arlette has her hands full at home, too. She has a 17-year-old son and an 11-year-old daughter.
Arlette's daughter plays basketball and is active with singing and dancing in church groups. Her son plays football in the fall and basketball year-round. As his number one fan, Arlette travels to his games all around the state and even into Florida. Since she's a PD patient, Arlette is able to travel with relative ease — if she’s driving, she just packs up her supplies in her car, and if she’s flying, she coordinates with the Fresenius Medical Care Patient Travel Service to have her supplies shipped to her destination.
Arlette takes life day-by-day, and says PD has enabled her to be even more active than she was before starting dialysis.