After weeks of planning, Dialysis Patient Citizens welcomed 30 patients and family members to Washington, D.C. to meet with their legislators on a beautiful spring day in April for our annual advocacy day. As you may know, last year our advocates were snowed in so we were very grateful for the warmer temperatures this time around!
Hrant Jamgochian, CEO of Dialysis Patient Citizens, participated in a congressional briefing sponsored by the Alliance for Home Dialysis on May 16th. DPC joined hip-hop artist David Rush, former U.S. Representative Karen Thurman, Larry Weisberg and Dr. Sue Quaggin to provide policymakers with policy options to improve access to home dialysis. DPC’s most recent membership survey indicated significant insurance barriers to access for home dialysis.
On behalf of kidney patients nationally, Dialysis Patient Citizens (DPC) filed a legal complaint with the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Office of Civil Rights citing discriminatory behavior by Blue Cross Idaho (BCI) against individuals with kidney failure, a disease which disproportionately impacts minorities.
For decades, dialysis patients have received financial assistance from the American Kidney Fund to help them maintain their private insurance or Medigap coverage. Recently, insurers started to reject those payments from AKF in an effort to purge kidney patients from their health plans.
We ask you to please share your stories about the help that AKF has provided, and about any problems you have experienced due to an insurance company refusing to take AKF payments. You need not give your name. Click here to take our survey.
March is National Kidney Month, which provides you with the perfect opportunity to spread awareness by educating your community and your legislators about kidney disease and the importance of kidney health. You can find educational information on the website of our sister organization, the DPC Education Center to share with your family and community. Additionally, we can provide promotional materials for any awareness events you plan to hold in March.
On February 25, Congressman Jerrold Nadler (D-NY) and Congressman Michael Burgess M.D. (R-TX), joined by Senator Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY) and Senator Mark Kirk (R-IL), introduced the Living Donor Protection Act of 2016 to protect the rights of living organ donors.