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Letter: Congress needs to act to restore protections for dialysis patients

2024-04-15T16:08:31+00:00April 11th, 2024|Categories: Patient Stories in the News, Private Insurance Coverage|

In the United States, dialysis treatment should be affordable. Unfortunately, inadequate coverage for dialysis often plunges patients into debt. Dialysis should not bankrupt you. In our system, Americans on dialysis almost always wind up using Medicare. Since Medicare only covers 80% of the bill, patients must figure out how to cover the remainder. I was on dialysis for 10 years, and I received a kidney transplant in 2018. I was forced to stop working when I began dialysis, but my mother’s private insurance covered my bill. Private insurance helped me immensely; however, a recent Supreme Court decision may give private [...]

Congress must not leave kidney patients behind

2024-04-16T15:10:00+00:00April 9th, 2024|Categories: Patient Stories in the News, Private Insurance Coverage|

I have chronic kidney disease. Thankfully, my kidneys are still functioning, but they are at risk of failure any time. I became a dialysis patient advocate because I may eventually have to withstand the difficulties that come with dialysis in America. I am fighting for my future and for the future of all dialysis patients in America. I am concerned with a recent Supreme Court decision that allows private insurers to essentially push new dialysis patients off of their private insurance and onto Medicare soon after beginning treatment. This puts the health and well-being of those already fighting a monumental battle at [...]

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 [...]

Letter: Dialysis debt a burden; Congress must act

2024-04-12T19:20:23+00:00April 2nd, 2024|Categories: Patient Stories in the News, Private Insurance Coverage|

We Americans with kidney failure must accept the fact that we will be in medical debt for the rest of our lives. To pay for dialysis treatment, some patients keep working and use private insurance. Others live in states that supplement the other 20%. For me, although I have my husband’s private insurance, we still owe thousands of dollars out-of-pocket. I was a single mom when I started dialysis ten years ago, and money has always been tight. I have not been able to pay much more than the minimum payments on my medical debt. For patients just beginning dialysis, [...]

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 [...]

U.S. Rep. Grothman: Save Wisconsin dialysis patients

2024-03-29T01:09:10+00:00March 17th, 2024|Categories: Patient Stories in the News, Private Insurance Coverage|

Kidney failure changed the course of my life. I began dialysis, the exhausting treatment kidney failure patients need to survive, three months pregnant with my son. I received a kidney transplant, which ultimately failed, and I have been on dialysis for a total of nine-and-a-half years. It’s been an arduous journey. Dialysis costs upwards of $100,000 per year, so most patients rely on some combination of Medicare, Medicaid, private insurance and charity. I began dialysis as a young adult, so I needed Medicaid immediately, but many others begin with employer-provided private insurance. As I’ve learned over the course of my [...]

Indiana Passes Affordable Access to Medigap for Under-age 65 Dialysis Patients

2024-03-29T01:09:11+00:00March 15th, 2024|Categories: Article, Medicare Advantage, Medigap Coverage, Promote Financial Security, Protect Patient Care, State Advocacy|

DPC is pleased to announce that the State of Indiana has passed into law SB 215, which provides three affordable Medicare supplemental plans (also known as Medigap) to Medicare enrollees under the age of 65 – including to patients with End Stage Renal Disease (ESRD). Senator Kyle Walker (R-IN-31) championed SB 215 in the Indiana Senate. Representative David Abbott (R-IN-18), a kidney transplant recipient himself, championed a companion bill in the Indiana House of Representatives. Governor Eric J. Holcomb (R-IN) signed SB 215 into state law on March 11, 2024. We want to recognize DPC Patient Ambassador Arthur Hill, whose compelling [...]

Dialysis Patient Citizens Applauds Passage of Legislation Securing Affordable Treatment for All Dialysis Patients in Indiana

2024-03-29T01:09:11+00:00March 14th, 2024|Categories: Medicare Advantage, Medigap Coverage, News, Press Release, Promote Financial Security, Protect Patient Care, State Advocacy|

WASHINGTON, D.C. (March 14, 2024) - Dialysis Patient Citizens (DPC), the leading advocacy organization for dialysis patients nationwide, today released the following statement applauding the passage and enactment of SB 215 in Indiana. The law offers three affordable Medicare supplemental plans (also known as Medigap) to Medicare enrollees under the age of 65 – including to patients with End Stage Renal Disease (ESRD). “We are grateful to see Indiana do right by dialysis patients and provide the patient choice and healthcare coverage that all Hossiers deserve,” said DPC Board President Andrew Conkling. “For decades, under-age 65 ESRD patients have paid [...]

Abilene Reflector-Chronicle: Letter to the Editor

2024-03-29T01:09:11+00:00March 14th, 2024|Categories: Patient Stories in the News, Private Insurance Coverage|

Dear Editor, When I served as my grandfather's caregiver during his dialysis treatments, the most frustrating challenge was the difficulty we faced dealing with Medicare. Slow payments and limited access to services were all too common for us, but thankfully we had access to supplemental insurance that helped cover costs. For many dialysis patients, private insurance plays an important role in providing access to care, either as supplemental insurance like my grandfather had, or as a patient's primary insurer in the early days of treatment. For years, patients were able to remain fully covered by private health insurance for 30 [...]

DPC Advocates Make Their Voices Heard!

2024-03-29T01:09:11+00:00February 21st, 2024|Categories: Article, Get Involved, Patient Ambassadors, Patient Stories in the News, Patient's Voice, Private Insurance Coverage, Promote Financial Security, Take Action|

DPC’s patient advocates are working hard to make their voices heard through media outreach, by sharing their stories through op-eds and letters to the editor. Coast to coast, patients are letting their local legislators know about the issues that are important to them, and how their votes in Congress affect their lives. Check out the amazing work of our advocates, and if you’re feeling inspired, we encourage you get involved! Learn to how to become a Patient Ambassador and other ways DPC can help you make your voice heard.

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