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Susan E. Quaggin

A silent public health crisis, kidney diseases affect approximately 10% of all Americans, or 37 million people. In addition to the burden of kidney diseases, management of patients with acute or chronic kidney diseases is complex and requires a dedicated team of experts to achieve the best possible outcomes.

In this month's ASN Kidney News, a series of articles highlight the key and evolving roles of advanced practice providers (APPs)—nurse practitioners (NPs) and physician associates (PAs; also called physician assistants)—as well as pharmacists, who are invaluable members of the kidney care team. The articles discuss career paths to

Lisa Koester

In 1972, nearly 40% of all patients on dialysis in the United States were on home dialysis. The next year, the Medicare End Stage Renal Disease (ESRD) Program began, and as a result, the use of home dialysis decreased dramatically. Over the years that have followed the establishment of the Medicare ESRD Program, there has been a resurgence of home dialysis, and research demonstrates that more frequent dialysis has better health outcomes than dialysis administered three times per week (1). U.S. Renal Data System (USRDS) data from 2019 reveal that 13.1% of prevalent patients with end stage kidney

Lisa Koester

In 1972, nearly 40% of all patients on dialysis in the United States were on home dialysis. The next year, the Medicare End Stage Renal Disease (ESRD) Program began, and as a result, the use of home dialysis decreased dramatically. Over the years that have followed the establishment of the Medicare ESRD Program, there has been a resurgence of home dialysis, and research demonstrates that more frequent dialysis has better health outcomes than dialysis administered three times per week (1). U.S. Renal Data System (USRDS) data from 2019 reveal that 13.1% of prevalent patients with end stage kidney

Jane Davis and Kim Zuber

In 1965, on opposite sides of the country, two revolutions in health care took place. In North Carolina, corpsmen returning from the Vietnam conflict put their skills and training to use in the newly formed profession: physician assistant (PA) (1, 2). In Colorado, registered nurses received postgraduate education, enabling them to provide health care in rural communities as nurse practitioners (NPs) (3). Both professions were formed to fill the need created simultaneously by a physician shortage and the increased numbers of patients eligible for health care under Medicare legislation (4). In 2021,

Jane Davis and Kim Zuber

In 1965, on opposite sides of the country, two revolutions in health care took place. In North Carolina, corpsmen returning from the Vietnam conflict put their skills and training to use in the newly formed profession: physician assistant (PA) (1, 2). In Colorado, registered nurses received postgraduate education, enabling them to provide health care in rural communities as nurse practitioners (NPs) (3). Both professions were formed to fill the need created simultaneously by a physician shortage and the increased numbers of patients eligible for health care under Medicare legislation (4). In 2021,

Jennifer Branch

I have been fortunate to work in the field of nephrology my entire career, mostly as a registered nurse for the first 20 years and now as an advanced practice provider over the past 3 years. I currently serve as an inpatient nurse practitioner in transplantation at an academic health system. For the first 2 years, I also had experience in outpatient clinics and dialysis units.

Outpatient clinic experience

Seeing patients on an outpatient basis during my outpatient clinic experience allowed me to review labs, medications, and health issues with many minutes of teaching while completing a full examination. Health

Jennifer Branch

I have been fortunate to work in the field of nephrology my entire career, mostly as a registered nurse for the first 20 years and now as an advanced practice provider over the past 3 years. I currently serve as an inpatient nurse practitioner in transplantation at an academic health system. For the first 2 years, I also had experience in outpatient clinics and dialysis units.

Outpatient clinic experience

Seeing patients on an outpatient basis during my outpatient clinic experience allowed me to review labs, medications, and health issues with many minutes of teaching while completing a full examination. Health

Candice Halinski

Originally trained to provide holistic primary care, nurse practitioners (NPs) practice in a variety of acute and chronic care settings. The pathway to practice requires candidates to pursue multiple educational prerequisites and degrees (Figure 1). These rigorous demands are likely to increase in the coming years. Education and training begins with the completion of baseline prerequisites in addition to the attainment of a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) and active licensure as a registered nurse (RN) in the state of practice. State licensure requires that candidates successfully pass a board certification examination formally known as the National

Candice Halinski

Originally trained to provide holistic primary care, nurse practitioners (NPs) practice in a variety of acute and chronic care settings. The pathway to practice requires candidates to pursue multiple educational prerequisites and degrees (Figure 1). These rigorous demands are likely to increase in the coming years. Education and training begins with the completion of baseline prerequisites in addition to the attainment of a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) and active licensure as a registered nurse (RN) in the state of practice. State licensure requires that candidates successfully pass a board certification examination formally known as the National

Kim Zuber and Dale Gomez

Physician assistants (PAs) are licensed clinicians, trained in the medical model, who practice medicine in every specialty, setting, and state. They are dedicated to expanding access to care and transforming health through patient-centered, team-based medical practice, and as such, nephrology is a perfect home. In 1997, a cohort of nephrology PAs, under the auspices of the American Academy of Physician Associates, created a specialty organization—American Academy of Nephrology PAs (AANPA)—for all facets of nephrology PAs (e.g., office, dialysis, transplant, and intensive care unit). In 2020, of <148,000 PAs in the United States working in 70 medical and surgical subspecialties, only