20 Things to Know about Your ASN

A Look at ASN’s Activities Since Kidney Week 2013

  1. ASN is overseeing a detailed analysis of the Nephrology Workforce. The society contracted with a team from George Washington University in Washington, DC, to evaluate data from multiple sources to determine the composition and practice patterns of the current workforce, the subspecialty’s evolving clinical role in health care, potential effects of recent policy changes on nephrology practice, and potential market trends in the future.
  2. ASN invited 219 medical students, graduate students, and residents to participate in the 2014 Kidney STARS program (formerly known as the ASN Program for Students and Residents). The society received 998 applications for travel support from students, residents, fellows, and other trainees and funded 366 trainees (including the 219 Kidney STARS) to attend Kidney Week 2014.
  3. ASN partnered with Mount Desert Island Biological Laboratory to provide 30 medical and graduate students a weeklong experience in the “Origins of Renal Physiology.” Kidney TREKS (Tutored Research and Education for Kidney Scholars) also promotes ongoing mentorship at the students’ medical or graduate schools as well as travel support to Kidney Week.
  4. The ASN Diversity and Inclusion Work Group is gathering more demographic information from ASN members, including data on race and ethnicity. The society encourages members to provide this information when they renew their membership. The work group is developing strong baseline data to evaluate the success of ASN’s commitment to diversity and inclusion.
  5. Assessing the impact of the ASN Career Development Grants Program, “The Kidney Research Predicament” concluded that ASN-funded grant recipients “are making significant contributions to disseminating nephrology research.” Since 1996, ASN has invested more than $19 million in career development grants, enabling nearly 120 investigators to conduct original, meritorious research. Besides funding up to 20 career development grants annually, the ASN Foundation for Kidney Research also funds 20 nephrology fellows and 10 medical students each year.
  6. The ASN Foundation for Kidney Research also launched the William and Sandra Bennett Clinical Scholars Program. Established by former ASN President and founding Editor-in-Chief of the Clinical Journal of the American Society of Nephrology (CJASN) William M. Bennett, MD, FASN, and wife Sandra, the program will support two aspiring kidney educators annually to conduct projects to advance all facets of nephrology teaching.
  7. ASN helped spearhead successful efforts to pass the HOPE (HIV Organ Policy Equity) Act of 2013. ASN also organized the 2014 Kidney Community Advocacy Day, uniting more than 100 representatives from 14 patient and professional organizations to conduct 133 meetings with members of the U.S. Congress and their staffs in support of research funding and immunosuppressive drug access. Efforts to ensure the highest quality care for kidney patients also paid dividends: Several Medicare programs implemented ASN recommendations, including making home dialysis more accessible, eliminating unnecessary quality measures, and protecting access to Part D drugs and dialysis care for hospice patients.
  8. ASN launched a Research Advocacy Strategy that seeks an additional $150 million per year over 10 years for kidney research above current U.S. federal government funding—a request supported by nearly 35 other organizations. Congressional Kidney Caucus Co-Chair Rep. Tom Marino (R-PA) called for a report to Congress on the adequacy of federal investment in kidney research. ASN President Sharon M. Moe, MD, FASN, testified before the U.S. House of Representatives Committee on Science, highlighting the lack of innovation and need for better therapies. Dr. Moe testified that a prize competition could harness the power of the private and academic sectors to spur breakthroughs in care.
  9. ASN convened a Summit for Community Nephrologists. Participants provided key information that will help inform ASN policy initiatives and improve the annual meeting experience for all health professionals. The summit also provided valuable insights into current and future workforce initiatives. For example, ASN will explore opportunities to help nephrologists incorporate new technologies, maximize application of electronic health records, and incorporate telehealth into practice.
  10. The Summit for Community Nephrologists is part of a three-year effort to strengthen ASN’s relationships with its many Internal and External Constituencies. In 2013, the society held summits for underrepresented minorities, for PhDs, and organized the first Summit of U.S. Kidney Organizations. This year, ASN has organized a second Summit of U.S. Kidney Organizations and a Forum of International Kidney Organizations, which will both take place during Kidney Week. ASN, the European Renal Association–European Dialysis and Transplant Association (ERA–EDTA), and the International Society of Nephrology (ISN) held a leadership retreat in June and are planning a follow-up meeting in January 2015.
  11. ASN joined other specialty societies and the American College of Physicians to raise concerns about Maintenance of Certification (MOC) 2014, which the American Board of Internal Medicine (ABIM) introduced in January. Changes to the program are intended to make MOC a more continuous process throughout the 10-year certification cycle, spreading recertification requirements more evenly. The entire internal medicine community was confused about these changes and an overhaul of ABIM’s governance structure.
  12. ASN implemented the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME) Next Accreditation System (NAS) Internal Medicine Subspecialty Reporting Milestones for fellowship training and implemented Nephrology Curricular Milestones and entrustable professional activities (EPAs) on July 1. NAS moves each specialty toward continuous accreditation through developing outcomes-based milestones as a framework for determining resident and fellow performance within the six ACGME Core Competencies.
  13. ASN will present the Inaugural Michelle P. Winn Endowed Lectureship during Kidney Week 2014. Focused on glomerular diseases and genetics, the endowed lecture honors Dr. Winn, a generous mentor, respected clinician, and admired physician-scientist. In 2007, Dr. Winn received the Young Investigator Award from ASN and the American Heart Association.
  14. In 2014, ASN focused its regional version of Kidney Week—called ASN Highlights—outside the United States. ASN Highlights were held in Amsterdam as part of the ERA–EDTA Congress; Santiago, Chile, in cooperation with the Sociedad Latinoamericana de Nefrología e Hipertensión; and Berlin, with the German Society of Nephrology. ASN Highlights will take place in at least six countries in 2015, including Brazil, Germany, Mexico, South Africa (as part of ISN’s World Congress of Nephrology), United Kingdom (as part of the ERA–EDTA Congress), and the United States (in Chicago, Houston, and Orlando).
  15. The Nephrology Self-Assessment Program (NephSAP) moved from print to online. This move allowed NephSAP to expand its unparalleled educational content for kidney professionals as well as offer an array of new features to enhance learning. The new version offers easier access, personalized options, and integration features.
  16. ASN recently completed a search process for the next Editor-in-Chief of ASN Kidney News. Pascale H. Lane, MD, FASN, has built Kidney News into ASN’s largest-circulation publication, and ASN is very grateful for her incredible achievements. Richard A. Lafayette, MD, has been appointed Editor-in-Chief and will begin his term January 1, 2015.
  17. The Impact Factors for the Journal of the American Society of Nephrology (JASN) and CJASN continue to increase. JASN rose from 8.98 to 9.46, and CJASN grew from 5.068 to 5.25. JASN remains the number one cited journal in nephrology. The 2013 impact factor (released in July 2014) is based on the number of citations made in 2013 to articles published in 2011 and 2012.
  18. A partnership between ASN and the Food and Drug Administration (FDA)—that includes 68 member organizations from around the world—the Kidney Health Initiative (KHI) continues to achieve its mission of enhancing patient safety and fostering innovation in kidney disease. Representatives from ASN, FDA, and other KHI members met in June for the second annual stakeholders’ meeting, and KHI has initiated eight projects since its creation in September 2012.
  19. Of ASN’s 14,928 members, 6184 (41 percent) are from outside the United States, representing 115 countries. On average, 45 percent of the participants at Kidney Week are from outside the United States, and 2715 (56 percent) of the 4864 abstracts submitted for Kidney Week 2014 were submitted from outside the United States. During the past 12 months, JASN and CJASN received 58 percent and 68 percent, respectively, of submissions from outside the United States; 66 percent of journal subscriptions, 75 percent of Facebook followers, and 45 percent of Twitter followers are from Around the Globe.
  20. Coming Soon, ASN will convene a “blue ribbon panel” to focus on career development, mentoring, and sponsorship to expand support for future generations of kidney professionals; add the Kidney Transplantation Practice Improvement Module (in partnership with the American Society of Transplantation), launch the Kidney Self-Assessment Program, which have already been approved by ABIM; and finalize a new strategic plan.