Kidney Research Advocacy Day

Since the ASN Research Advocacy Committee began Kidney Research Advocacy Day in 2012, the committee’s annual visits to the National Institutes of Health (NIH) have helped to raise awareness about the burden of kidney disease and to build support for more investments in kidney research. When the committee returns to NIH in June, it will present specific recommendations of areas for kidney research that the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK) should prioritize.

In past years, the Research Advocacy Committee has also met with senior staff at the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) Office of Research and Development, Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute, and Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency. Topics for discussion have included more support for both basic and innovative kidney research; the decreasing rate of kidney research grant applications, specifically MD-PhD grant application rates; bolstering the training pipeline for young investigators; and more inter-agency collaboration to advance kidney research.

ASN has also been working with a number of advocacy coalitions that successfully persuaded Congress to raise the budget caps for federal discretionary funding in 2016 and 2017. Thanks to bicameral, bipartisan support, the prospects look good for NIH and VA research program funding increases in those years.