There are more outpatient dialysis clinics in the United States than there are Burger King restaurants, and critics like Wood see a pernicious pattern: The dialysis industry is big business and too profitable. AKF has long advocated that patients take their health into their own hands, not only by getting out of the brick-and-mortar center but also by choosing home dialysis instead of going to a clinic.

Most patients who do home hemodialysis (HD) have a care partner who helps them with treatments and equipment. This person can be a family member or friend, and they go through training together to learn how to do PD and to care for the equipment. The supplies needed for a dialysis treatment include an artificial kidney machine, called a cycler, fluid, tubing and other materials. Some patients also have to buy hand sanitizer, gloves and other supplies.

If you’re interested in starting a dialysis center, the first step is to conduct a feasibility study. This involves analyzing the local market and estimating demand for a dialysis center in your area. It also outlines the startup costs, operating budget and how many months you will need to have cash on hand before beginning to provide patient services.

If your business plan is persuasive enough, you may be able to secure funding from investors or from venture capital firms. In addition, you’ll need to compile a list of the costs associated with opening a dialysis center and prepare financial projections. These projections will show the sources of revenue and expense, such as patient fees, insurance reimbursements and government subsidies, and will help you determine if your startup expenses are affordable.