ASN and NKF Recommend Policies to HHS for Reopening America

By ASN Policy Staff

May 26, 2020

The American Society of Nephrology (ASN) and the National Kidney Foundation (NKF) sent policy recommendations to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) that urged the Administration to consider the unique needs of the 37 million Americans affected by kidney disease and the physicians who care for them as the country reopens.

Americans affected by kidney disease are particularly vulnerable to COVID-19 infection due to compromised immune systems, multiple comorbid conditions that increase their risk for COVID-19 complications, and because most patients with kidney failure require frequent visits to in-center dialysis centers for treatment. 

“Kidney patients continue to be extremely vulnerable to severe COVID-19 infection and we must take every precaution to help protect them as the country reopens,” said Kevin Longino, CEO of National Kidney Foundation, and a kidney transplant patient.

In the letter, ASN and NKF urge the Administration to adopt policies and procedures that “to ensure kidney patients, their families and clinicians have adequate access to personal protective equipment, priority access to COVID-19 testing, and early access to a vaccine once it is developed; support end-stage renal disease (ESRD) patients’ ability to safely access dialysis services and other related care; prioritize the safe resumption of organ transplantation, which has significantly declined as a result of COVID-19; extend and build upon temporary policy changes that may be required to meet the ongoing needs of kidney patients; and address the needs of patients who develop acute kidney injury (AKI) as a result of COVID-19 infection,” as states begin to reopen.

“COVID-19 has made an indelible impact on the process of care for patients with kidney diseases,” said Anupam Agarwal, MD, FASN, President of the American Society of Nephrology. “The Administration moved quickly and decisively to address the safe continuity of care for people with kidney diseases. Now we must take the long view to prioritize and expand access to safe and effective treatments and therapies while also addressing the vast clinical consequences of COVID-19 infection on kidney health. We welcome the continued support, partnership, and leadership of the Administration to address this particularly vulnerable patient population.”

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ASN Policy Staff
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The American Society of Nephrology (ASN) and the National Kidney Foundation (NKF) sent policy recommendations to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) that urged the Administration to consider the unique needs of the 37 million Americans affected by kidney disease and the physicians who care for them as the country reopens.

Americans affected by kidney disease are particularly vulnerable to COVID-19 infection due to compromised immune systems, multiple comorbid conditions that increase their risk for COVID-19 complications, and because most patients with kidney failure require frequent visits to in-center dialysis centers for treatment. 

“Kidney patients continue to be extremely vulnerable to severe COVID-19 infection and we must take every precaution to help protect them as the country reopens,” said Kevin Longino, CEO of National Kidney Foundation, and a kidney transplant patient.

In the letter, ASN and NKF urge the Administration to adopt policies and procedures that “to ensure kidney patients, their families and clinicians have adequate access to personal protective equipment, priority access to COVID-19 testing, and early access to a vaccine once it is developed; support end-stage renal disease (ESRD) patients’ ability to safely access dialysis services and other related care; prioritize the safe resumption of organ transplantation, which has significantly declined as a result of COVID-19; extend and build upon temporary policy changes that may be required to meet the ongoing needs of kidney patients; and address the needs of patients who develop acute kidney injury (AKI) as a result of COVID-19 infection,” as states begin to reopen.

“COVID-19 has made an indelible impact on the process of care for patients with kidney diseases,” said Anupam Agarwal, MD, FASN, President of the American Society of Nephrology. “The Administration moved quickly and decisively to address the safe continuity of care for people with kidney diseases. Now we must take the long view to prioritize and expand access to safe and effective treatments and therapies while also addressing the vast clinical consequences of COVID-19 infection on kidney health. We welcome the continued support, partnership, and leadership of the Administration to address this particularly vulnerable patient population.”

Date:
Tuesday, May 26, 2020