News2020-03-21T20:39:15+00:00

Dialysis Patient Citizens News

DPC Supports Increased Access and Quality of Care for Dialysis Patients Amid COVID-19

March 23rd, 2020|

DPC provided feedback to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) regarding the COVID-19-related issues that the kidney community is facing. DPC made recommendations to HHS in the following areas: Transportation COVID-19 Treatments and Vaccinations Home Dialysis People with End-Stage Renal Disease have a higher risk for developing a severe illness from COVID-19. As a result, it is crucial we do all that we can to help this vulnerable population in order to decrease the negative impact and spread of the virus. Read DPC's letter [...]

DPC Comments on CMS Proposed Rule Regarding Medicare Advantage

March 10th, 2020|

In 2021 End-Stage Renal Disease (ESRD) patients will be permitted to enroll in Medicare Advantage (MA) plans, potentially bringing major changes to ESRD care and how patients experience it. When open enrollment begins this fall, we want to make sure patients have access to the same robust benefits offered with MA plans right now. DPC reached out to the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) with recommendations on how to ensure ESRD patients maintain the access, choice and quality care they expect when these benefits are [...]

Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19) Information for Dialysis Patients

March 6th, 2020|

Updated 3/26/2020 Coronavirus disease 2019 (abbreviated COVID-19) is a new respiratory virus spreading to the United States. Although the health risk is low in this country at this time, we know that people who have chronic illnesses, weakened immune systems and/or are over the age of 60 could pose an increased risk if they develop the disease. That said, it is not a time to panic, but rather a time to use procedures that help prevent the flu, coronavirus and other infections. Prevention A great prevention tip [...]

Check Out Our New Website

February 25th, 2020|

We recently launched a new and fully-responsive website, making it easier than ever for dialysis patients, family members and policy makers to learn more about the issues affecting kidney disease patients and what they can do to help improve patient quality of life. Learn about kidney disease, stay abreast of the key issues that impact the lives of people with kidney disease, discover ways to get more involved with DPC, find helpful resources for taking action as an active advocate and stay informed with our latest news. Check out the [...]

DPC Increases Advocacy Efforts with New and Promoted Team Members

February 18th, 2020|

Elevating the patient voice with policy makers to protect dialysis patients’ access to quality care remains a core part of what we do at Dialysis Patient Citizens (DPC). To help us take our advocacy efforts to new heights, DPC recently promoted one of our team members, added two new staff and opened another office. Rhonda Clark, who has worked with DPC since June of 2016, was promoted to Grassroots Manager. Clark will spearhead DPC's grassroots efforts to help elevate the patient voice of 31 million Americans with [...]

Are You Ready for World Kidney Day?

February 11th, 2020|

March is National Kidney Month, and World Kidney Day is March 12, 2020. Now is a great time to elevate the voice of dialysis patients by reaching out to lawmakers and advocating for people with kidney disease in your city. Below are some ways you can get involved: Become a leader in your community by joining DPC's Patient Ambassador Program. Write to your lawmaker about a bill that impacts the quality of care for people with kidney disease Schedule a facility tour with your elected officials by coordinating [...]

Mark Your Calendar for our February Patient Ambassador Call

January 17th, 2020|

Please join us on February 13 at 2:00 p.m. Eastern for our first Patient Ambassador call of 2020! Please RSVP to let us know you can attend the call. Call Details are below: Date: Thursday, February 13, 2020 Time: 2:00 PM ET, 1:00 PM CT, 12:00 PM MT, 11:00 AM PT Follow these instructions at the time of the call: Call: 1-877-399-5186 Enter Meeting Code: 269 743 2061 Join Online (optional): https://dialysispatients.adobeconnect.com/patient-ambassador-call/ Thank you for elevating the voice of dialysis patients by representing DPC as a leader in your community. [...]

Action Alert – Secure Patient Access to Immunosuppressive Medications

January 12th, 2020|

The Comprehensive Immunosuppressive Drug Coverage for Kidney Transplant Patients Act of 2019 (H.R. 5534) was recently introduced by Representatives Ron Kind (D-WI) and Michael Burgess (R-TX). This legislation would extend Medicare coverage of immunosuppressant drugs beyond the current limit of 36 months for patients who are unable to obtain health insurance coverage elsewhere. Immunosuppressive medications play a critical role in preventing transplant patients bodies from rejecting a new donor kidney. Right now, Medicare only covers immunosuppressive drugs for 36 months after a patient receives a kidney transplant. [...]

Court Temporarily Blocks AB 290, Allowing Charitable Assistance Program to Continue Serving Dialysis Patients Pending Trial Outcome

January 8th, 2020|

DPC works hard to protect patient access to quality care for all dialysis patients, which is often only possible with the support charitable assistance from organizations such as the American Kidney Fund (AKF). Unfortunately, a new law recently enacted in California threatens that access. DPC quickly joined AKF and two patients as plaintiffs in a lawsuit seeking to prevent this newly passed law from going into effect at the start of 2020. In late December, we were pleased that the court recognized our concerns of potential patient harm, [...]

Medigap Coverage Gains Support in New Legislation

January 4th, 2020|

During recent discussions on drug pricing legislation, House leadership decided to use some of the potential savings to pay for some of our priorities. One such provision would provide all dialysis patients with access to Medigap—a supplemental insurance plan which helps patients pay for the expenses not covered by Medicare. This priority was originally included in the Chronic Kidney Disease Improvement in Research and Treatment Act (S. 1676/ H.R. 3912) or “Kidney Bill.” Under Federal law, Medicare beneficiaries age 65 and older are guaranteed access to Medigap [...]

Happy Holidays and DPC’s Top 10 Accomplishments of 2019

December 20th, 2019|

Dialysis Patient Citizens wants to wish you and your family a Happy Holiday, as well as a safe and healthy New Year. Our offices will be closed for the holidays starting December 23 through January 1. We also want to take this opportunity to share our list of Top 10 Accomplishments for 2019, which would not have been possible without your support. Thank you again for helping us elevate the dialysis patient voice with policy makers. We are extremely grateful for all of your advocacy efforts, and we look forward [...]

Trump Administration Proposes New Rules to Increase Accountability and Availability of the Organ Supply

December 17th, 2019|

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) today took major steps to increase the availability of organs for the 113,000 Americans on waitlists for lifesaving organ transplants – 20 of whom die each day. As directed by President Trump in his July 10 Executive Order on Advancing American Kidney Health, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) is issuing a proposed rule to change the way organ procurement organizations (OPOs) are held accountable for their performance, and the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) is issuing [...]

Advocacy Day Application Deadline Extended 1 Week

December 14th, 2019|

Good news—the deadline to apply for DPC's 2020 Advocacy Day in Washington, DC has been extended one week to Friday, December 20! We want to elevate the patient voice with policy makers with a strong and united group of advocates from all 50 states. Become a leader in your community by applying, and you could be the voice for dialysis patients with your state lawmakers in our nation’s capital.  We understand that the holidays are an especially busy time of year for many people, and we hope [...]

DPC Board of Directors Elect New President

December 9th, 2019|

Andrew Conkling Andrew Conkling was elected as the new president for Dialysis Patient Citizens by DPC's Board of Directors, effective immediately. Conkling has served as DPC Vice President since 2016, participated in a number of DPC's Advocacy Days and met with lawmakers to discuss kidney disease issues from his home state of Alabama. He has also served as a DPC Patient Ambassador, clinic patient representative and done community outreach by sharing his personal experiences with young people. "It is an honor to be selected as DPC's [...]

DPC Meets with Oregon State Legislatures to Protect Patient Care

December 2nd, 2019|

DPC staff standing in front of Oregon State Capitol In mid-November, DPC staff traveled to Salem, Oregon, to attend an informational hearing held by the Oregon House Committee on Health Care regarding outpatient dialysis treatment. The hearing focused on issues such as improving and expanding patient access to care while exploring ways in which to lower the cost of health care delivry for dialysis patients. While there, DPC staff also took the opportunity to meet individually with nearly all the Members of the House and [...]

Congressman Payne Jr. Comments on CMS Proposed Rule Regarding ESRD Treatment Choices Model Demonstration

November 20th, 2019|

Congressman Donald Payne Jr. sent a letter to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) regarding the ESRD Treatment Choices Model Demonstration, which is the rule that pertains to increasing the number of home dialysis treatments and kidney transplants. Payne focused on the importance of protecting and prioritizing patient choice. Specifically, he explained that home dialysis is not always an optimal treatment option for patients due to a lack of caregiver support and the necessary space requirements needed for this treatment. Payne provides a unique perspective to [...]

DPC’s Advocacy Day Application is OPEN! Apply by December 13, 2019

November 13th, 2019|

DPC is pleased to invite you to apply for our 2020 Advocacy Day! We are very fortunate that we are able to bring dialysis patients to Washington, D.C. each year to meet with their elected officials. This provides advocates like you with the unique opportunity to make your voice heard on behalf of dialysis patients from your state in order to improve dialysis care. Next year is no exception. We will meet with Members of Congress and their staff on Tuesday, June 2, 2020 with a comprehensive training [...]

DPC Fights for Patient Access in California

November 7th, 2019|

DPC is participating in a lawsuit against the state of California after a bill was passed by the Legislature that jeopardizes patient access to charitable assistance. The new law (known as Assembly Bill 290) was signed by California Governor Gavin Newsom last month. Conditions in the new law practically eliminates charitable assistance, which has helped thousands of low-income patients in California pay for their health insurance. The law will take effect January 1, 2020 unless the judge orders the delay DPC is requesting. DPC is fighting similar legislation [...]

Patients and Advocacy Groups File Federal Lawsuit Against the State of California to Overturn AB 290

November 4th, 2019|

ORANGE COUNTY, Calif., Two kidney failure patients, together with two patient advocacy groups—the American Kidney Fund (AKF) and Dialysis Patient Citizens (DPC)—filed a federal lawsuit today in the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California against the State of California. The lawsuit, Doe vs. Becerra, asks the court to strike down AB 290, the newly enacted law that will do irreversible harm to dialysis and transplant patients who need charitable assistance to help them pay for health care. Filed against California Attorney General Xavier Becerra, California Insurance Commissioner Ricardo Lara, Shelley Rouillard, Director of [...]