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ASN Staff

Name: Jason Watts, MD, PhDWatts_photo_0.jpg

Institution: University of Michigan

Grant: 2020 ASN-Harold Amos Medical Faculty Development Program Recipient

Project Title: Regulatory Mechanism of RNA Polymerase Pausing Affects Gene Expression in the Kidney


ASN Staff

ASN_Foundation_Logo-Color (1).jpgThe following articles are brief Q&A sessions with KidneyCure (ASN Foundation) grant recipients. The sessions explore what research the individual is undertaking with the grant funds, their hopes for the research, career goals, and advice for others interested in applying for these grant funds.

ASN Staff

The American Society of Nephrology (ASN) stands with members of the LGBTQ+ community to continue to work to improve diversity, inclusiveness, and equity for members, patients, and the kidney community at large.

On Monday, June 15, 2020 the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that civil rights law protects gay and transgender workers from workplace discrimination, extending workplace protections to millions across the nation. While this is a wonderful victory for the LGBTQ community, steps backward in other areas continue to undermine LGBTQ equality.

Jeffrey S Berns MD

The Nephrology and Hospice & Palliative Medicine fellowship training programs of the University of Pennsylvania, Yale University, and the University of North Carolina have collaborated to create a combined 2-year training program through the ACGME’s Advancing Innovation in Residency Education (AIRE) program.

The combined fellowship will lead to ABIM board eligibility in both disciplines. Each participating institution anticipates recruiting one carefully selected applicant into this program to start training in July 2021. Candidates will submit materials through ERAS, and a special track in the NRMP match will be used for application to the program. This new training program will integrate academic and clinical experiences in nephrology and hospice and palliative medicine to produce skillful nephrologists who can address the enormous need for palliative care in the practice of nephrology, and hospice and palliative medicine specialists who possess expertise in kidney supportive care.

ASN Staff

In an editorial released on June 23rd by The Hill ASN President Anupam Agarwal, MD, FASN and NKF President Kramer, MD, MPH expressed that the intersection of COVID-19 and kidney disease is fraught with potential calamities and investment for prevention and research are necessary.

Kidney patients – including those with kidney failure receiving dialysis and transplant recipients – are more at risk from SARS-CoV-2 exposure because of their vulnerable physical conditions, weakened immune systems, and the open settings in which they receive care. Data has shown that people with kidney diseases were 2.5 times more likely to die than other hospitalized patients with COVID-19 . And recent data released from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services showed that kidney disease patients undergoing dialysis were hospitalized with COVID-19 at a rate of 1,341 hospitalizations per 100,000 beneficiaries, the highest hospitalization rate among all Medicare beneficiaries. In fact, the first few deaths that occurred in the state of Washington were patients with kidney disease. Kidney disease also disproportionately affects minority populations, a population at higher risk for COVID-19 and COVID-19 associated mortality compared to non-minority populations,” states the editorial.

Nicole Fauteux

The statistics are startling. As of April 20, African Americans were far more likely than whites to become infected with SARS-CoV-2 and die from COVID-19. More recent data paint a similarly bleak picture of COVID-19’s impact in Hispanic and Native-American communities.

David White

The Kidney Care Choices (KCC) Model, also known as the “voluntary model”, is moving forward beginning April 1, 2021 – a delay from the original start date of January 1, 2021 – due to the Public Health Emergency (PHE). The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) Innovation Center announced that in addition to delaying the start of the model, the agency will also provide a second window for applications in 2021 for new participants with a starting date for that group of January 1, 2022. Additionally, applicants approved for the April 1, 2021 start date will have the option to delay their start date to January 1, 2022 without penalty or having to reapply. Also covered in this announcement was an extension of the Comprehensive ESRD Care Model (CEC) until March 31, 2021, with financial adjustments for performance year 2020 due to COVID-19. The CEC created the ESRD Seamless Care Organizations (ESCOs) of which there are 33 nationally.

The following statement was released today:

Washington, DC (June 1, 2020)—The American Society of Nephrology (ASN) is proud of its efforts to promote diversity, equity, and inclusion among kidney health professionals. This commitment is hollow, however, if ASN fails to oppose racism. ASN strongly supports and will advance efforts to achieve equality to reduce the adverse impact of racism, especially on health and in health care.

ASN Staff

The American Society of Nephrology (ASN) recognizes that the current coronavirus pandemic has placed unique demands on frontline caregivers, necessitated restrictions on travel, and imposed limitations on individuals with various health conditions.

To help ensure the health, safety, and security of our applicants during the 2020-2021 recruitment cycle, ASN strongly encourages nephrology fellowship programs to conduct all interviews with applicants remotely, utilizing both telephone and videoconferencing capabilities. Programs should not disadvantage applicants who are unable to travel due to personal or programmatic decisions, and programs should plan for an all-virtual recruitment season.

Nicole Fauteux

Although widely thought of as a respiratory ailment, COVID-19 has demonstrated its ability to impact multiple organs. For those with existing kidney disease, the dangers of the SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus are especially stark. Researchers at New York City’s Montefiore Medical Center reported that recipients of kidney transplants who contract COVID-19 appear to be at exceptionally high risk of severe illness. Additionally, a study of electronic health record data by CarePort Health found that people with chronic kidney disease were 2.5 times more likely to die than other hospitalized COVID-19 patients. Even patients without prior kidney disease are proving susceptible to acute kidney injury (AKI) associated with the virus.