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The American Society of Nephrology (ASN) is spearheading efforts to secure direct federal allocation of COVID-19 vaccines to dialysis patients and frontline dialysis workers. This allocation would improve access for a vulnerable patient population, more than half of whom are Black, Hispanic, Asian, Native American, and Native Hawaiian or other Pacific Islanders (NHPIs).

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) has asked ASN to share with its members that the ESRD Quality Reporting System (EQRS) has been suspended due to data submitting issues. 

Users are asked not to submit additional data at this time CMS writes “We are committed to ensuring the accuracy and reliability of our data, and are working to rapidly resolve these issues.”

 

Today the US Senate passed the Comprehensive Immunosuppressive Drug Coverage for Kidney Transplant Patients Act, extending Medicare coverage of life saving immunosuppressive medications for the life of the kidney transplant. This welcome advance will take effect in 2023.

This tremendous advance results from countless hours of advocacy by ASN members and stakeholders throughout the kidney and transplant communities

David White

On Thursday, December 17 from 5:00 - 6:30 pm EST the American Society of Nephrology will host a webinar reviewing key components of the ESRD Treatment Choices (ETC) Model (going into effect January 1, 2021).

This webinar will be an opportunity for ASN members to learn important details about the federal government’s mandatory model to use payment policy to increase kidney patient choice of home dialysis and kidney transplantation.  ETC will include 30% of Medicare ESRD beneficiaries, nephrologists, and dialysis facilities randomized from hospital referral regions (HRRs) across the country. 

ASN Staff

ASN and the National Kidney Foundation (NKF) would like to announce open forums for anyone interested in providing input into the final report of the NKF-ASN Task Force on Reassessing the Inclusion of Race in Diagnosing Kidney Diseases. 

In January 2021, the task force will host three live forums in which individuals can testify (or provide written comments) on relevant topics, including but not limited to, health care disparities for Black or African American, Hispanic or Latino, American Indian or Alaska Native, Asian American, or Native Hawaiian or Other Pacific Islander people; kidney function measurement; patient safety/standardization and new or innovative approaches to kidney function measurement; and measurement or reporting that does not include race. 

David White

 

Nephrologists will receive boosts in payments – especially in the rate for reimbursement for home dialysis – starting on January 1, 2021, according a final rule recently issued by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS). The increases to nephrologists’ reimbursements were part of a multi-year push by ASN to increase the values incorporated in those reimbursement calculations. 

Join ASN for New Approaches to Transform Outcomes for Kidney Disease and Heart Disease in Patients with Diabetes, a videoconference scheduled for Thursday, December 10, from 4:00 – 5:30 PM EST. 

International clinical experts will review the latest guidelines for both kidney disease and cardiovascular disease, and discuss the most recent clinical trials and promising therapies, including the groundbreaking use of SGLT2 inhibitors to reduce morbidity and mortality.  These are among the first new therapies demonstrated to help prevent the development of heart disease and reduce progression of kidney disease in people with T2DM.

asn logo small.jpgThe American Society of Nephrology (ASN) condemns baseless claims that physicians and hospitals are overcounting or inflating the number of deaths due to the COVID-19 pandemic. People with kidney failure are the most vulnerable patients to COVID-19 in the entire Medicare population.

Anupam Agarwal MD FASN

Health professionals take great pride in our commitment to improving the lives of those we care for. We recognize and accept that our calling involves risk, day in and day out.

This year, facing the challenges, stress, and ongoing burden of a global pandemic, kidney professionals have demonstrated the resolve and focus on excellence that exemplifies our profession.

Physicians, scientists, nurses, advanced practice providers, technicians, and so many others have stepped into unknown territory with grace and courage. We have devised new ways to provide care, taken on additional work with resolve, and shared essential knowledge and insights with peers worldwide.

In September 2020, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) and its Innovation Center (CMMI) finalized the End-Stage Renal Disease (ESRD) Treatment Choices (ETC) Model. This mandatory payment model will test changes to care for Americans with kidney disease within a 30%, randomized set of Medicare beneficiaries with kidney failure.

The stated goals are increasing patient choice, increasing utilization of home dialysis, and providing greater access to transplantation, options for which the American Society of Nephrology (ASN) has long advocated.