Chronic Conditions Legislation

Care for people with chronic conditions accounts for 93% of all Medicare spending, and the US healthcare system’s fractured approach to care delivery does not effectively reward providers who provide the type of coordinated care these patients need. Sen. Johnny Isakson (R-GA) and Sen. Mark Warner (D-VA) convened a Chronic Conditions Working Group in 2015 to address this issue.

After soliciting input from ASN and other stakeholders, the working group is expected to release draft legislation for feedback, improvement, and introduction in 2016. Besides highlighting how kidney patients—among the most complex and vulnerable chronic disease patients—would benefit from the legislation, ASN’s recommendations included improving care coordination, especially during care transitions, for patients with advanced CKD and other complex chronic conditions. The society also suggested permitting ESRD patients to enroll in Medicare Advantage (MA) plans and piloting of new care delivery programs specifically for kidney patients.