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Letter: Medicare, Medicaid not keeping up with inflation, hurting patient care

2024-06-06T16:32:28+00:00June 5th, 2024|Categories: Dialysis Funding, Medicare Advantage, Patient Stories in the News, Staffing Shortages|

Dear Editor, I was born with a rare genetic disorder that caused my kidneys and eyes to be underdeveloped. I have battled chronic kidney disease at all levels throughout my entire life. At age 25, I went into complete kidney failure (AKA End Stage Renal Disease) and began dialysis, which is a continuous and grueling treatment which does the work my kidneys can’t. The financial and emotional difficulties I’ve dealt with have been very challenging. Unfortunately, I must also worry about medical workforce shortages caused by a lack of federal funding. Over the past few years, the Centers for Medicare [...]

DPC’s 2024 Advocacy Day

2024-05-23T14:34:34+00:00May 20th, 2024|Categories: Advance Patient Choice, Article, Get Involved, Improve Access to Care, Increase Quality of Care, Medigap Coverage, News, Patient Ambassadors, Private Insurance Coverage, Promote Financial Security, Protect Patient Care|

Earlier this month, DPC hosted our annual Advocacy Day in Washington, D.C. where we bring together patients, family members, and care givers to meet with their Members of Congress to elevate the patient story for dialysis patients. This year we had 65 advocates attend, representing 25 states, who had almost 80 Congressional meetings. Our patients spoke to Congressional offices asking them to support H.R. 6860 – The Restore Protections for Dialysis Patients Act and H.R. 5027 – The Chronic Kidney Disease Improvement in Research and Treatment Act. These two bills would allow dialysis patients access to private insurance and Medigap [...]

Letter: Medicare failed us

2024-05-10T15:08:12+00:00May 6th, 2024|Categories: Dialysis Funding, Medicare Advantage, Patient Stories in the News, Staffing Shortages|

As a program coordinator for the Kidney Foundation of Central Pennsylvania, I have made it my life’s mission to help kidney patients manage their condition. I see or hear stories of the inadequate standards of care currently practiced at clinics, hospitals and specialist practices in this country. Many patients I talk to are frustrated and feel like they have been forgotten. We must do better. The problem lies in the lack of health care workers. A severe lack of funding makes it more difficult to hire and keep doctors, nurses and technicians. Much of the problem is demographic. With fewer [...]

Dialysis Patient Citizens Issues Statement on Passing of Congressman Donald Payne Jr.

2024-04-24T20:19:10+00:00April 24th, 2024|Categories: Improve Access to Care, Increase Quality of Care, News, Policy Issues, Press Release, Promote Financial Security, Protect Patient Care|

Rep. Payne Received Dialysis Treatment and Supported DPC Advocacy Efforts WASHINGTON, D.C. (April 24, 2024) - Today, Dialysis Patient Citizens (DPC) Board President Andrew Conkling issued the following statement on the passing of Rep. Donald Payne Jr. (D-NJ). Rep. Payne received dialysis treatment, advocated for better care and insurance coverage for dialysis patients, and spoke at a DPC advocacy event in Washington, DC. “We are deeply saddened to learn of the passing of Congressman Payne, who was a true friend to Dialysis Patient Citizens and a tireless advocate for dialysis patients across the country,” said DPC Board President Andrew Conkling. “Despite [...]

Poor care? Blame Medicare payments

2024-04-16T15:09:10+00:00April 14th, 2024|Categories: Dialysis Funding, Medicare Advantage, Patient Stories in the News, Staffing Shortages|

My husband Raymond and I met on a blind date. Three months later, his kidney unexpectedly failed, and I have walked alongside him on his patient journey ever since. My husband’s life depends on dialysis, the treatment that does what his kidney can’t do. Unfortunately, we confronted problems with our dialysis center that reflect larger trends caused by insufficient reimbursements from the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS). Our nation is confronting a demographic crisis, with fewer working-aged people and more patients, which is why we are seeing worsening shortages of health care workers. CMS’ reimbursements have been far [...]

Reimbursement rates for health care professionals needs to be increased

2024-04-15T14:49:54+00:00April 7th, 2024|Categories: Dialysis Funding, Medicare Advantage, Patient Stories in the News, Staffing Shortages|

As a patient with End Stage Renal Disease (ESRD), or kidney failure, I know how health care workforce shortages can affect patients. I have been on dialysis for 7 years. At the clinic where I receive dialysis – the life-saving treatment which replaces my kidney function – any staff shortage can mean the difference between a smooth treatment and chaos. America is facing a historic health care workforce crisis. Staffing challenges and high demand have led to gaps in care like longer emergency room wait times. Unfortunately, Medicare is failing to address inadequate staffing and care. The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid [...]

DPC Celebrates 20th Anniversary

2024-04-24T16:16:22+00:00April 1st, 2024|Categories: About DPC, Advance Patient Choice, Article, Get Involved, Improve Access to Care, Increase Quality of Care, Patient Ambassadors, Promote Financial Security, Protect Patient Care|

Since our founding 20 years ago, Dialysis Patient Citizens (DPC) has had the privilege of working with amazing advocates to help elevate the patient voice with policy makers to improve their quality of life. At our upcoming Advocacy Day Conference, May 5 – 7, 2024, we are excited to: honor the incredible work of our patient advocates; thank key Congressional Champions; and recognize some of our kidney community allies. Advocates from across the country will also take their stories to Capitol Hill to advocate for additional patient protections. To all of our patient advocates, family members, care partners, and kidney community [...]

DPC Recognizes Patients and Dialysis Staff as Part of its 20th Anniversary Celebration

2024-03-29T01:09:12+00:00February 14th, 2024|Categories: Advance Patient Choice, Article, Get Involved, Improve Access to Care, Increase Quality of Care, Patient Ambassadors, Promote Financial Security|

In January, DPC kicked off a year-long 20th Anniversary celebration by recognizing one of our outstanding patient advocates, and thanked dialysis facility staff who go above “the extra mile” to provide exceptional care, even in the face of recent staffing shortages. Gene Blankenship was the recipient of DPC’s inaugural Patient Advocacy Champion Award for his work in advocating for dialysis patients with his elected officials. DPC also awarded its inaugural Dialysis Dynamo awards to Amanda Byrd, AA/CCHT, Alicia Caldwell, RN, CDN, Sean Scearce, PA, and Marcy Stites, RN, for their hard work providing 5-star quality care for an underserved, rural community [...]

2024 Advocacy Day – 24 Hours Left to Apply!

2024-03-29T01:09:12+00:00January 25th, 2024|Categories: Advance Patient Choice, Article, Get Involved, Improve Access to Care, Increase Quality of Care, Patient Ambassadors, Policy Issues, Promote Financial Security, Protect Patient Care, Take Action|

Dialysis Patient Citizens (DPC) will host our 20th Anniversary Celebration and Annual Congressional Advocacy Day May 6-7, 2024. Participants will be selected based on the quality of their applications, legislative priorities, and previous involvement in DPC's advocacy efforts. We will hold a training session ahead of our congressional meeting for those participating to explain the process and review our current legislative “asks.” The application period is open until January 26, 2024. We just ask that you tell us a little about yourself and why you think you would be a good candidate for this incredible opportunity. We will make a decision [...]

DPC Expresses Outrage at CMS Indifference to Dialysis Patient Suffering

2024-03-29T01:09:15+00:00October 31st, 2023|Categories: Article, Dialysis Funding, Improve Access to Care, Increase Quality of Care, Innovation, News, Staffing Shortages|

On October 27, 2023, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) issued its final rule updating payment rates and policies under the end-stage renal disease (ESRD) prospective payment system. This rule fails to address two serious problems currently facing dialysis patients, which DPC raised in its comment letter: workforce shortages and lack of access to innovative treatments. DPC’s statement on the Rule is available here.

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