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News2020-03-21T20:39:15+00:00

Dialysis Patient Citizens News

Action Alert – Provide ALL Dialysis Patients with Access to Medigap

September 9th, 2020|

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 [...]

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

September 8th, 2020|

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 [...]

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

September 1st, 2020|

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 [...]

Mark Your Calendar for our September Patient Ambassador Call

August 25th, 2020|

Please join us early next month for our next Patient Ambassador call: Engaging with Elected Officials on Social Media During a Pandemic. Learn tips about what you can do to elevate your voice online. Please RSVP to let us know you can attend the call. Call Details are below: Date: Thursday, September 3, 2020 Time: 2:00 PM ET, 1:00 PM CT, 12:00 PM MT, 11:00 AM PT Follow these instructions at the time of the call: Call: 1-877-399-5186 Enter Meeting Code: 269 743 2061 Join Online (optional): https://dialysispatients.adobeconnect.com/advocacy/ [...]

Scientists Report Favorable Findings for Peritoneal Dialysis Patients

August 19th, 2020|

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 [...]

The Coronavirus Outbreak Puts Dialysis Patients At Risk

August 14th, 2020|

Jeff Needham turned his lifestyle around with diet and exercise after he was diagnosed with kidney disease. A true inspiration, Needham competed in two Olympic distance triathlon relays, as well as a three-day, 230-mile cycling ride, in support of a better health care system. In addition, Needham warns about the increased dangers of COVID-19 for dialysis patients and highlights the benefits of participating in a coordinated care pilot program.

DPC’s 2020 Annual Membership Survey is Live!

August 6th, 2020|

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 [...]

Action Alert – Help us Increase Patient Access to Immunosuppressive Medications

July 28th, 2020|

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 [...]

ESRD Community Honors the Legacy of Congressman John Lewis

July 27th, 2020|

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 [...]

Care Coordination Fixes One of the Biggest Flaws in the American Health Care System

July 20th, 2020|

Gloria Rohrer lost a leg after needing multiple surgeries when her kidney transplant failed. Rohrer later lost her eyesight in one eye while vacationing in Florida, which could have been avoided with proper care coordination. She could have shut down and become angry with the world, instead Rohrer became a stalwart advocate for patient access to care coordination services, so that others can avoid similar complications.

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

June 22nd, 2020|

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 [...]

Medicare Removes Important Protection for Dialysis Patients in Managed Care Plans

May 26th, 2020|

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 [...]

Visit the New Kidney Care Matters Site to Find Out What You Can do to Help Dialysis Patients

May 22nd, 2020|

Dialysis Patient Citizens is excited to announce that the new Kidney Care Matters website is live. This initiative, led by DPC, is focused on promoting better kidney care through care coordination for people with End-Stage Renal Disease. Coordinated care means that all health care providers serving a patient share information with each other in a timely manner about the patient’s health, treatments prescribed, and care delivered. Well-structured care coordination has the potential to provide a more focused, dedicated care management approach that would streamline care, improve health [...]

Patient Advocates Raising Awareness Through Letters to the Editor

May 20th, 2020|

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 [...]

Sen. Grassley, Leaders in Dialysis Community Pay Tribute to the Late Jack Reynolds, Former DPC President and Founding Board Member

May 11th, 2020|

WASHINGTON, D.C., (May 14, 2020) -- Today, Dialysis Patients Citizens (DPC) released statements from U.S. Senator Chuck Grassley (R-IA) and leaders in the dialysis community in honor of the late Jack Reynolds, who served as former DPC president and a founding Board member. U.S. Senator Chuck Grassley (R-IA): “One of the privileges of public service is meeting Iowans like Jack Reynolds. A farm kid who nearly lost his life at age 4, Jack survived against the odds of a 100-gallon barrel of water crushing his abdomen. By age [...]

Another Dialysis Ballot Initiative Looming in California

April 28th, 2020|

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 [...]

ESRD Network – Your Resource for Access to Care

April 27th, 2020|

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS), which is the federal Agency that oversees the Medicare program, recently reiterated its commitment to ensuring dialysis patient access to care during the current pandemic. They said that if any dialysis patients are having problems with transportation, that prevent you from getting to dialysis, they want to help. CMS also knows that your dialysis access is your lifeline, so if you have any complications with your fistula, graft or catheter and need help – that is why they created the [...]

Sign the Petition to Support Integrated Care for Dialysis Patients

April 23rd, 2020|

We are pleased to report that Congress is working on draft legislation—known as the BETTER Kidney Care Act—to expand care coordination opportunities for dialysis patients. The COVID-19 pandemic has put the health of kidney disease patients at risk more than ever before, while also demonstrating the many challenges to ensuring their continuity of their care. Show your support for improving the lives of dialysis patients during this unprecedented time by signing our on-line petition to increase dialysis patient access to care coordination, then urge Congress to enact [...]

Increasing State Policy Maker Outreach to Better Support our Members During COVID-19

April 21st, 2020|

DPC works tirelessly on behalf of its patient members to elevate their voice and concerns to elected officials about policy issues that impact ESRD patients. As you know, DPC has expanded its state advocacy efforts over the past year and added two staff members who focus on state issues and government relations. So, how does an organization continue this level of engagement during a pandemic when state legislatures are recessed, and social distancing doesn’t allow face-to-face interactions? Moreover, most state governments are focused solely on fighting COVID-19 [...]

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