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Dialysis Patient Citizens and Consumers’ Checkbook Introduce Dialysis Plan Choice To Help Patients During Open Enrollment

2020-11-02T20:06:26+00:00November 2nd, 2020|Categories: Advance Patient Choice, Care Coordination, Medicare Advantage, Press Release|

WASHINGTON, D.C., -- Dialysis Patient Citizens (DPC) today introduced Dialysis Plan Choice, a new online tool designed in collaboration with Consumers' Checkbook for dialysis patients to quickly and easily compare their current Medicare Fee-For-Service plan with the options available to them through Medicare Advantage now that Open Enrollment is underway. "For many dialysis patients, this year marks the first time they will be eligible to enroll in Medicare Advantage plans thanks to the passage of the 21st Century Cures Act in 2016," said DPC Board President Andrew Conkling. "Since this is new territory for many dialysis patients, we wanted to provide them with [...]

Action Alert – Secure Kidney Patient Access to Immunosuppressive Medications

2020-10-19T20:44:19+00:00October 5th, 2020|Categories: Article, Immunosuppressive Drug Coverage, Take Action|

The Comprehensive Immunosuppressive Drug Coverage for Kidney Transplant Patients Act (H.R. 5534, S. 3353) is gaining momentum in Congress. The bill was voted out of the Energy and Commerce Committee, and has over 100 cosponsors in the House and over 20 cosponsors in the Senate. We need you to help us press for passage by contacting your Members of Congress today. This bill was introduced by Representatives Ron Kind (D-WI) and Michael Burgess (R-TX), as well as Senators Bill Cassidy (R-LA) and Dick Durbin (D-IL). This legislation would extend Medicare coverage of immunosuppressive drugs beyond the current limit of 36 [...]

CMS Announces Penalties and Rewards for Promoting Home Dialysis and Transplants

2020-09-22T14:49:34+00:00September 22nd, 2020|Categories: Access to Transplant, Article, Dialysis Funding, Transplant Donor Protection, Treatment Options|

On September 18, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) announced it finalized the End-Stage Renal Disease Treatment Choices (ETC) Model. The ETC Model was a cornerstone of President Trump’s Advancing Kidney Health Executive Order in 2019. It encourages an increased use of home dialysis and kidney transplants in approximately 30 percent of dialysis facilities and nephrology practices and will be implemented on January 1, 2021. CMS estimated reduced expenditures of $23 million over five and a half years, anticipating that providers assigned to the program will be penalized for not meeting standards. DPC and many other kidney groups opposed this [...]

DPC Comments on CMS Proposed ESRD Annual Payment Rule to Increase Dialysis Patient Quality Care

2020-09-22T15:12:47+00:00September 1st, 2020|Categories: Access to Transplant, Care Coordination, Comment Letter, Innovation, Medicaid, Medicare Advantage, Quality Incentive Program, Treatment Options|

Each year—typically during the summer—the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) puts out rules for how they are going to pay for dialysis treatment. The rules reflect CMS’ latest policies, and organizations have the opportunity to provide feedback about the rules before they go into effect on January 1. DPC provided feedback to CMS regarding their End-Stage Renal Disease (ESRD) Annual Payment rule. DPC’s letter addresses the following important topics for improving ESRD patient care: Protect Access for Costlier Patients by Completing Reconsideration of Case-Mix Adjusters Protect Access for Patients in Disadvantaged Regions by Addressing Social Risk Factors Focus [...]

Scientists Report Favorable Findings for Peritoneal Dialysis Patients

2020-08-25T15:27:37+00:00August 19th, 2020|Categories: Article, Treatment Options|

Researchers found a 48 percent decrease in mortality and a 13 percent decrease in transition to in-center hemodialysis among peritoneal dialysis (PD) patients over time. The positive findings were most prevalent for patients in urban and larger PD program (25+ patients) settings. With COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations increasing among people with End-Stage Renal Disease (ESRD), these findings may be reassuring for people interested in trying an alternative home dialysis treatment amid the global pandemic. Whether or not peritoneal dialysis is an appealing or viable treatment option, patients should choose the modality that works best for them. Read more about the study.

DPC’s 2020 Annual Membership Survey is Live!

2020-08-10T14:19:35+00:00August 6th, 2020|Categories: 5-Star Ratings, Access to Transplant, Article, Care Coordination, Charitable Premium Assistance, Dental Coverage, Dialysis Funding, Get Involved, Immunosuppressive Drug Coverage, Innovation, Medicaid, Medicare Advantage, Medigap Coverage, Quality Incentive Program, Take Action, Transplant Donor Protection, Transportation Services, Treatment Options|Tags: |

Elevate the Voice of Patients with Kidney Disease and Their Caregivers Our 2020 Annual Membership Survey is live, and it will remain open until Friday, August 21. We are counting on your participation, as patient feedback helps to shape our public policy agenda and patient education priorities for the next year. This year we ask that both patients and caregivers take our survey. Rest assured your responses will remain completely anonymous. We only share the overall survey results with state and federal level policy makers, so they will better understand your needs, experiences, and preferences. Your feedback is crucial. Therefore, we will [...]

Action Alert – Help us Increase Patient Access to Immunosuppressive Medications

2020-07-28T16:29:34+00:00July 28th, 2020|Categories: Article, Immunosuppressive Drug Coverage, Medicare Advantage, News, Take Action|

The Comprehensive Immunosuppressive Drug Coverage for Kidney Transplant Patients Act (H.R. 5534, S. 3353) is gaining momentum in Congress, and we need your help continuing to get the word out. This bill was introduced by Representatives Ron Kind (D-WI) and Michael Burgess (R-TX), as well as Senator Bill Cassidy (R-LA). This legislation would extend Medicare coverage of immunosuppressive 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 recipients from rejecting a donor kidney. Right now, after dialysis patients receive a transplant, [...]

Medicare Removes Important Protection for Dialysis Patients in Managed Care Plans

2020-05-26T18:43:33+00:00May 26th, 2020|Categories: Article, Medicare Advantage, Treatment Options|

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) last week issued a regulation for Medicare Advantage (MA) plans that eliminates time and distance limits from network adequacy requirements for dialysis facilities. Network adequacy requirements for health plans ensure that patients can have access to all necessary providers with reasonable promptness. Time and distance limits prescribe a maximum driving time or distance in miles that a consumer must travel to get to a doctor or facility. The limits are higher in rural areas. CMS replaced the time and distance limits with another standard, a network “consistent with the prevailing community pattern [...]

Patient Advocates Raising Awareness Through Letters to the Editor

2020-07-28T14:55:21+00:00May 20th, 2020|Categories: Advance Patient Choice, Article, Care Coordination, Press|

Dialysis Patient Citizens takes great pride in the work that our patient ambassadors are doing each and every day in their communities and local dialysis facilities. Through providing additional education and access to resources for fellow dialysis patients, they help to make a difference in the lives of patients and encourage them to be their own advocates. One of the ways our ambassadors are making their voices heard are through letters to the editor, where they write and submit a letter to the editor to his/her local newspaper about a kidney disease issue and/or the importance of advocating for better [...]

Another Dialysis Ballot Initiative Looming in California

2020-09-24T16:18:36+00:00April 28th, 2020|Categories: Article, News, Policy Issues, State Advocacy, Treatment Options|

Last week, the Service Employees International Union (SEIU) and United Health Workers West (UHW) submitted petition signatures for a potential ballot initiative in November. If the signatures are approved, California voters will vote on measure to dramatically increase the cost of dialysis care. The same group backed a similar measure (Proposition 8) two years ago, which voters widely rejected. DPC opposes the current ballot initiative because it adds burdensome requirements intended to drive up the cost of care for dialysis patients. One provision, in particular, would require a nephrologist to be present at all times at the dialysis facility whenever [...]

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