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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 [...]

DPC Hosts Successful Virtual Patient Advocacy Day

2020-09-22T14:56:29+00:00September 20th, 2020|Categories: Article, Care Coordination, Medigap Coverage, Take Action|

DPC patient activists and health care professionals from across the country met with Members of Congress and their legislative staff to advocate on behalf of dialysis patients during DPC’s Annual Advocacy Day on September 15, 2020. This was DPC's largest Annual Advocacy Day with representatives from 32 states and close to 200 virtual Congressional office meetings. It was also DPC's first virtual Advocacy Day due to the COVID-19 pandemic—all Congressional meetings were held via telephone. Advocates asked Congress to ensure all dialysis patients gain access to Medigap through passage of the Jack Reynolds Memorial Medigap Expansion Act. They also discussed the [...]

Action Alert – Provide ALL Dialysis Patients with Access to Medigap

2020-09-10T16:19:29+00:00September 9th, 2020|Categories: Article, Medigap Coverage, Take Action|

Jack Reynolds The Jack Reynolds Memorial Medigap Expansion Act (H.R. 8181) was recently introduced by U.S. Representative Cynthia Axne (D-IA) in honor of DPC founding Board member and our longest serving president Jack Reynolds. This bill would require Medigap plans to offer coverage to all End-Stage Renal Disease (ESRD) Medicare beneficiaries regardless of age. Without supplemental insurance like Medigap, Medicare patients bear significant out-of-pocket expenses for physician visits, hospital admissions, and other services they need to stay alive. Medicare has no out-of-pocket limit, unlike private insurance, and because ESRD patients under age 65 do not have access to [...]

Dialysis Patient Citizens Applauds Introduction of the Jack Reynolds Memorial Medigap Expansion Act

2020-09-11T18:36:18+00:00September 8th, 2020|Categories: Medigap Coverage, Press Release|

Jack Reynolds WASHINGTON, D.C., (September 8, 2020) -- Dialysis Patients Citizens (DPC) today applauded the introduction of the Jack Reynolds Memorial Medigap Expansion Act, new legislation sponsored by U.S. Representative Cynthia Axne (D-IA-3) in honor of founding DPC Board member and longest serving president Jack Reynolds. This bill would expand Medigap coverage for End-Stage Renal Disease (ESRD) patients under the age of 65. “My top priorities in Congress have been to protect those living with pre-existing conditions and making health care accessible for those in need of treatment,” Rep. Axne said. “For someone like Jack who had kidney [...]

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 [...]

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, [...]

ESRD Community Honors the Legacy of Congressman John Lewis

2020-07-28T14:43:44+00:00July 27th, 2020|Categories: Medigap Coverage, News|

Our nation recently lost one of its most iconic and stalwart champions for justice in Congressman John Lewis. He dedicated his life to fighting for civil rights and social justice for all Americans, and his legacy will forever be remembered. Congressman Lewis was also one of the kidney community’s most consistent, trustworthy, and respected allies, and we join the nation in mourning his passing. Throughout his more than three decades in the U.S. House of Representatives, Congressman Lewis was a champion for patients with End-Stage Renal Disease (ESRD) and worked with them to increase access to treatment.  Specifically, he repeatedly introduced the Chronic Kidney Disease [...]

Dialysis Patient Citizens Files Lawsuit Against HHS Secretary Alex Azar and CMS Administrator Seema Verma Over New Regulation That Undercuts Dialysis Patient Access to Affordable, High-Quality Care

2020-09-24T16:18:19+00:00June 22nd, 2020|Categories: Care Coordination, Legal Defense, Medicare Advantage, News, Press Release|

WASHINGTON, D.C., (June 22, 2020) -- Today, Dialysis Patient Citizens (DPC) filed suit in the United States District Court for the District of Columbia against Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar, Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services Administrator Seema Verma, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, and the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services in opposition to a discriminatory new federal regulation that will limit the ability of hundreds of thousands of End-Stage Renal Disease (ESRD) patients to access affordable, high quality treatment. “ESRD patients successfully fought to get Congress to pass bipartisan legislation that would ensure [...]

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 [...]

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