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DPC Urges Medicare Agency to Withdraw Proposal That Could Weaken Protections for Transplant Patients

2020-03-21T20:46:58+00:00March 6th, 2014|Categories: Access to Transplant, Article, Comment Letter, Immunosuppressive Drug Coverage, Improve Access to Care|

Dialysis Patient Citizens (DPC) weighed in against a Medicare proposal that would complicate some transplant patients’ access to immunosuppressive drugs. Medicare Part D, like other private health plans, uses drug formularies to keep down costs. Formularies favor certain drugs over others in exchange for discounts. Patients are encouraged to ask their doctors to first prescribe medications on the formulary to take advantage of lower co-pays. Often a patient’s condition can be addressed by a drug on the formulary, but many transplant patients find that “first-line” immunosuppressive treatments aren’t effective or have serious side-effects. For this reason, DPC told CMS: “Immunosuppressive [...]

We Need to Hear From You!

2020-03-21T20:46:58+00:00February 7th, 2014|Categories: Article, Immunosuppressive Drug Coverage, Increase Quality of Care, Treatment Options|

DPC is currently working on two initiatives that require your input! First, the National Quality Forum is conducting a study of "Person-Centered Care" and is looking for patient input. DPC has volunteered to collect patient viewpoints on this subject, and we are inviting our members and other dialysis patients to share your experience with and insights into the care you've received. The National Quality Forum is an organization that endorses the standardized healthcare performance measures that are used by Medicare and other insurers to monitor quality. Its goal in this project is to figure out how to assess whether care is person-centered, which may [...]

Giving Tuesday: What Can We as Dialysis Patients Give?

2020-03-21T20:46:58+00:00December 6th, 2013|Categories: Immunosuppressive Drug Coverage, Patient's Voice, What is Kidney Disease?|Tags: |

By James Myers, DPC Patient Ambassador On the website for the Polycystic Kidney Foundation, there is an announcement about Giving Tuesday, December 3rd, 2013. It says you can give one of three ways: your voice, your time or your dollars. As a dialysis patient, I don’t know about you, but I don’t have any money. But two things that I have a lot of are voice and time, and I am more than happy to lend those to the cause of defeating PKD. I can honestly say that having an invisible fatal illness has colored every decision that I have [...]

Has the ACA Expanded Medicare’s Immunosuppressive Drug Coverage for Kidney Transplant Recipients?

2020-03-21T20:46:59+00:00November 18th, 2013|Categories: Immunosuppressive Drug Coverage, Patient's Voice|

By Jim Myers, DPC Patient Ambassador. I had a conversation with my doctor last week. (My nephrologist, Dr. Vavilala, we call him Dr. V). He asked me if I had heard anything during my last trip to Washington, D.C. about an extension of coverage through the ACA to kidney transplant patients of the immunosuppressive drug coverage beyond the 36 month period that currently exists. This rang a bell in the back of my brain, so I decided to check it out. Every transplant patient or transplant candidate knows the current status of the law. If you are a kidney transplant [...]

Dialysis Advocates Praise Introduction of Kidney Transplant Drug Access Legislation

2020-12-07T22:12:35+00:00March 28th, 2013|Categories: Access to Transplant, Immunosuppressive Drug Coverage, Press Release|

Urge Support for the Comprehensive Immunosuppressive Drug Coverage for Kidney Transplant Patients Act of 2013 (Washington, DC) – In honor of National Kidney Month, dialysis patient advocates praised the introduction of the Comprehensive Immunosuppressive Drug Coverage for Kidney Transplant Patients Act of 2013 (S.323/H.R. 1325). This vital legislation will extend anti-rejection drug coverage for kidney transplant patients under the age of 65 beyond the current three year period. The bill would ensure transplant patients receive the necessary medications to maximize the life of the donated organ while using our limited federal resources more efficiently. “While receiving a kidney transplant is a [...]

Congressional Corner: Two Transplant Bills Introduced in Congress

2020-03-21T20:47:21+00:00March 22nd, 2013|Categories: Access to Transplant, Immunosuppressive Drug Coverage, Improve Access to Care|Tags: |

By Carrie L., Director of Congressional and State Relations Recently, two bills relating to kidney and organ transplants have been introduced in Congress. Senator Richard Durbin of Illinois and Senator Thad Cochran of Mississippi introduced the Comprehensive Immunosuppressive Drug Coverage for Kidney Transplant Patients Act of 2013 (S. 323) in the Senate, and Congressman Michael Burgess and Congressman Ron Kind introduced a companion bill (H.R. 1325) in the House. If passed, these bills will extend Medicare immunosuppressive drug coverage for kidney transplant patients under 65 years old for the life of the graft. Under current law, Medicare beneficiaries who are [...]

Congressional Corner: Over the Cliff – Then Quickly Back Up Again

2020-03-21T20:47:40+00:00January 3rd, 2013|Categories: Blog, Immunosuppressive Drug Coverage, Transportation Services|

By Carrie L., Director of Congressional and State Relations Well, we went over the fiscal cliff. And then, just hours later a deal was struck, a few hours late but a deal to bring us back from the brink nonetheless. The 112th Congress concluded its tumultuous, and gridlocked 2 years by passing a deal to avoid massive tax hikes for the middle class and a 27% decrease in payments to Medicare providers on New Year’s Day. Unfortunately, cuts to the Medicare ESRD program were still included in the fiscal cliff package. The deal calls on the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid [...]

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