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DPC Advocates Help Push State Legislation Forward

2021-04-21T19:10:46+00:00April 20th, 2021|Categories: Advance Patient Choice, Article, Medigap Coverage, State Advocacy, Transplant Donor Protection, Uncategorized|

State legislatures are in high gear during spring, and efforts by state legislators to support dialysis patients are in full swing this month. We’ve already had several legislative victories on living organ donor protection bills, while Medigap expansion legislation for the ESRD population has been introduced in multiple states. With support from multiple DPC Patient Ambassadors and Board Members sharing their personal stories on these two policy issues, DPC is making robust arguments for states to actively help improve the quality of life for End Stage Renal Disease (ESRD) patients. Kentucky, New Jersey, Maryland and Washington legislatures have already passed [...]

New Year, New Administration Brings Changes to Medicare’s Kidney Demonstration Projects

2021-04-21T21:14:33+00:00April 14th, 2021|Categories: Article, Care Coordination, Dialysis Funding, Medicare Advantage, Protect Patient Care, Quality Incentive Program|

2021 was supposed to mark the beginning of three new Medicare programs to demonstrate innovations in kidney care, but a last-minute decision from the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Innovation has suspended two of them. This action unfortunately leaves about 50,000 dialysis patients with a nine-month gap in extra assistance they were receiving from a successful program that expired March 31. Here is the rundown on the current landscape of Medicare demonstration projects that impact dialysis patients. Demonstration projects are used by Medicare to test new models of care and/or new models of paying providers within Medicare’s traditional fee-for-service program. [...]

National Minority Health Month

2021-04-21T18:01:37+00:00April 5th, 2021|Categories: Article, Improve Access to Care|Tags: |

April is also recognized as National Minority Health Month, in an effort to highlight and address the health disparities experienced in minority communities. This is especially prevalent among kidney and dialysis patients; Hispanic or Latino Americans 1.3 times more likely to have kidney failure than white Americans, Black or African Americans are almost 4 times more likely, American Indians and Alaska Natives are 1.2 times more likely, and Asian Americans are also at a higher risk. Additionally, the main risk factors for chronic kidney disease (CKD) disproportionately affect minorities. Diabetes, high blood pressure, heart disease, family history of kidney failure, diabetes, [...]

April is Donate Life Month

2021-04-21T21:13:43+00:00April 1st, 2021|Categories: Access to Transplant, Article, Transplant Donor Protection|

Each April, National Donate Life Month encourages Americans to register as organ, eye, and tissue donors; to become educated about living donation (that includes living kidney donation!); and to honor those that have saved lives through the gift of donation. Over 100,000 children, men, and women are waiting for lifesaving organ transplants, with a new person added to the national transplant waiting list every 10 minutes. Here is some more information on the different types of transplant and what you can do to help. What are the different types of organ donation? Living donation – living donation is an opportunity [...]

DPC’s Annual Advocacy Day Application is Now Open! Apply by April 9, 2021

2021-03-23T17:06:29+00:00March 19th, 2021|Categories: Article, Get Involved, Take Action|

Each year Dialysis Patient Citizens is pleased to bring kidney patients and transplant recipients to Washington, D.C. to meet with their legislators and talk about issues that affect their quality of care. Due to the ongoing pandemic and out of abundance of safety for our patients, this year we will be hosting our fly-in virtually on September 21st, with two opportunities of training beforehand. Participants will be selected based on the quality of their application, legislative priorities, and previous involvement in DPC's advocacy efforts. Next year when we are hopefully able to resume an in person fly-in, previous participation will also [...]

Bipartisan Living Donor Protection Act Introduced to Protect Organ Donors

2021-03-23T16:49:50+00:00March 18th, 2021|Categories: Advance Patient Choice, Article, Policy Issues, Transplant Donor Protection|

Congressman Jerrold Nadler (D-NY) and Congresswoman Jamie Herrera Beutler (R-WA), joined by Senator Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY) and Senator Tom Cotton (R-AR), introduced the Living Donor Protection Act to protect the rights of living organ donors. The Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) does not specify that living organ donors can take unpaid leave to recover from their donation and does not guarantee that donors will have a job waiting for them after surgery. Further, according to a 2007 study in the American Journal of Transplantation, as many as 11% of living organ donors experience difficulty securing or paying for insurance after [...]

Bipartisan, Bicameral Members of Congress Urge Biden Administration to Finalize Organ Procurement Reforms

2021-03-23T16:54:15+00:00March 16th, 2021|Categories: Access to Transplant, Article|

A coalition of congressional leaders from the Senate Committee on Finance and the House Committee on Oversight and Reform today urged the Biden administration to finalize a rule to reform the organ procurement system in the United States. The letter, sent to Acting Health and Human Services (HHS) Secretary Norris Cochran was signed by Senate Finance Committee Chair Ron Wyden, D-Ore.; Senators Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa, Ben Cardin, D-Md., and Todd Young, R-Ind.; House Committee on Oversight and Reform (COR) Committee Chairwoman Carolyn B. Maloney, D-N.Y., and Ranking Member James Comer, R-Ky.; House COR Economic and Consumer Policy Subcommittee Chair Raja Krishnamoorthi, [...]

President Declares State of Emergency in Texas

2021-02-25T14:17:34+00:00February 15th, 2021|Categories: Article, Transportation Services|

The winter storm that recently crippled the state of Texas was difficult to watch, knowing millions of people were struggling to access electricity, heat, and clean water. But this situation was even more dire for dialysis patients whose lives literally depend on these resources, as well as the access to safe transportation to them. If you or a loved one are in need of assistance after this storm, please visit https://www.disasterassistance.gov/ to apply for assistance. Additionally, as a dialysis patient, should you ever find yourself in an emergency situation, please visit https://www.kcercoalition.com/en/patients/ for more information.

Open Enrollment Period for Current Medicare Advantage Members

2021-01-27T16:58:56+00:00January 25th, 2021|Categories: Article, Medicare Advantage|

From January 1 – March 31 each year, if you’re enrolled in a Medicare Advantage Plan, you can switch to a different Medicare Advantage Plan or switch to Original Medicare (and join a separate Medicare drug plan) once during this time. If you enrolled in a Medicare Advantage Plan during your Initial Enrollment Period (October 15 – December 7 last year) you can change to another Medicare Advantage Plan or go back to Original Medicare within the first 3 months of 2021. To help kidney patients explore their options, Dialysis Patient Citizens has established Dialysis Plan Choice, an online tool designed [...]

State Legislatures Introduce Bills that Would Positively Impact Dialysis Patients

2021-01-27T16:54:50+00:00January 22nd, 2021|Categories: Access to Transplant, Article, Immunosuppressive Drug Coverage, Medigap Coverage, State Advocacy, Transplant Donor Protection|

With the start of the new year, state legislatures throughout the country are beginning their legislative sessions with a flurry of new bills being introduced on a wide-ranging number of topics. While the Covid-19 pandemic and its economic impact will dominate much of the activity at state houses across the country this year, we are encouraged that some of the bills already filed this session would improve health outcomes for dialysis patients. Both Arizona and Kentucky have already introduced bills to expand Medicare supplemental insurance, or Medigap. This is significant because Arizona and Kentucky are two of the 28 states that [...]

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