Policy

March 18, 2020

In the wake of the Coronavirus Disease-2019 (COVID-19) Pandemic, the Medicare program is expanding telehealth coverage enabling clinicians to provide a wider range of health care services to their patients without those patients having to travel to a health care facility thereby reducing exposure. The American Society of Nephrology (ASN) strongly supports this bold move. Retroactive to March 6, 2020, Medicare, under waiver authority, will temporarily allow and pay clinicians to provide telehealth services for beneficiaries residing across the entire country.

March 16, 2020

A new CPT® code, 87635, has been released for immediate use for novel coronavirus testing offered by hospitals, health systems, and laboratories in the United States.  The code became effective Friday, March 13, 2020, for reporting of novel coronavirus tests across the entire healthcare system. Because of the immediate release and use of the code, clinicians will need to manually upload this code descriptor into their electronic health record (EHR) system.

March 16, 2020

As concerned physicians and scientists working in this area, we summarize the evidence on the NephJC website, The Coronavirus Conundrum: ACE2 and Hypertension Edition, (which will be updated in real time) and call for greater understanding and systematic data gathering, rather than hasty decision-making based upon incomplete or inaccurate information, or unjustified extrapolations.

March 9, 2020

Continuing in its bold move up the ladder of electronic health record (EHR) interoperability, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) and the Office of National Coordinator for Health Information Technology (ONC) jointly finalized two rules on March 9, 2020 that were originally proposed February 11, 2019. The rules are designed both to allow patients access to their own records and data via smartphone apps and to provide strong deterrents to those who would block data.

March 2, 2020

Building on the excitement surrounding the Executive Order on Advancing American Kidney Health and National Kidney Month in March, the National Kidney Foundation (NKF) launched an ambitious national public awareness campaign – The “Are You the 33%?” campaign – to raise public awareness of the causes and consequences of kidney disease.

February 28, 2020

On February 27, Senators Bill Cassidy, M.D. (R-LA) and Dick Durbin (D-IL) introduced legislation to extend Medicare coverage of immunosuppressive drugs for kidney transplant patients.  A top priority for ASN, the common-sense legislation would extend Medicare coverage of immunosuppressive medications for kidney transplant patients beyond the current 36-month limitation, ensuring that kidney transplant patients do not face losing their transplant due to an inability to afford their medications.

February 24, 2020

In a story that has transcended the kidney community and touched the mainstream, David Ayres, a 42-year-old kidney transplant recipient and director of operations at the Mattamy Athletic Centre, a local arena in Toronto, entered an NHL game on February 22nd between the Carolina Hurricanes and Toronto Maple Leafs in Toronto, Canada. When two of the Hurricanes goalies left the game with injuries, Ayres, the emergency backup goalie – a position that is almost never used – was called in to play the remaining 28 minutes of his first ever NHL game.

February 21, 2020

This week, the Baylor College of Medicine became the first academic center and care provider to publicly announce its support for the changes included in Medicare’s proposed rule on Organ Procurement Organizations (OPOs) Conditions for Coverage: Revisions to the Outcome Measure Requirements for Organ Procurement Organizations – joining the American Society of Nephrology (ASN) in its support of the proposed rule.

February 20, 2020

The Executive Order on Advancing American Kidney Health (Section 8) directed the Secretary of Health and Human Services (HHS) to propose a regulation to remove financial barriers to living organ donation essentially:

February 18, 2020

The National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK) posted its award funding policy for fiscal year (FY) 2020, including released paylines that are better than previous years.

NIDDK is establishing a nominal payline for new (Type 1) and renewal or competing continuation (Type 2) R01 applications of 16th percentile in FY 2020, which is higher than the 13th percentile in FY 2019.

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