Bringing Racial Equity to Kidney Transplant Evaluation

2023-05-04T13:42:14-04:00April 14th, 2023|Categories: eNews, Kidney Transplant, Treatment|

Researchers from the Medical University of South Carolina’s Department of Surgery has developed an initiative that will help address the disparities seen in kidney transplantation for African Americans. While African Americans develop kidney failure at a rate that is three times greater than Whites, they are four times less likely to receive a kidney transplant by 12 months after a diagnosis of kidney failure. There are many barriers that contribute to these inequities and the researchers at MUSC, hope to implement strategies designed to reduce the structural barriers that prevent African Americans from obtaining access to kidney transplantation. One barrier [...]

ADA Advises New BP, Lipid Targets for People With Diabetes

2023-04-22T19:24:20-04:00April 5th, 2023|Categories: eNews, Medication, Staying Healthy|

The American Diabetes Association has recently made more aggressive changes to the Standard of Care in Diabetes -2023. Published in December 2022 as a supplement in Diabetes Care, this document is considered the gold standard for the care of over 100 million Americans living with diabetes and pre-diabetes. Below is a summary of some of the recommendations: A blood pressure target for people with diabetes of less than 130/80 mmHg, if it can be reached safely. Blood pressure targets should be individualized through a shared decision-making process that addresses the risks of cardiovascular disease and the potential adverse effects of [...]

Staph Infections in Hemodialysis Patients

2023-03-07T13:58:56-05:00March 7th, 2023|Categories: eNews, Hemodialysis|

A new study, looking at data from the 2020 National Healthcare Safety Network (NHSN) and the 2017-2020 Emerging Infections Program (EIP), has found that Hispanic patients on hemodialysis had a 40% higher risk of having a Staphylococcus aureus (staph) bloodstream infection than white patients. This is on top of all hemodialysis patients being 100 times more likely to have an S. aureus bloodstream infection than non-dialysis patients. Data also showed that the S. aureus bloodstream infection rate was strongly associated with vascular access via central venous catheter over graft or fistulas. Higher rates of S. aureus bloodstream infections have also been [...]

A Career and Dialysis Become a Way of Life

2023-02-08T14:58:53-05:00February 1st, 2023|Categories: Dialysis, Employment, eNews, Hemodialysis, In-Center Hemodialysis, Physical Health|

By Gene Blankenship, DPC Board Member I was 42 years old when I crashed into dialysis, though my family obviously knew about my kidney disease. I also worked full time and so the next step was to tell my employer, OPEA. I cannot compliment my employer enough. From the second I told my Supervisor and our Executive Director it was, as the cool kids say, "cake". First words out of their collective mouths were "How can we help?'  My doctor and I had already discussed what I could do while still keeping my health a priority. This made [...]

Just a Dad with Kidney Disease

2023-01-11T14:08:01-05:00January 11th, 2023|Categories: Dialysis, eNews, In-Center Hemodialysis, Kidney Transplant, Quality of Life|

By Gene Blankenship, DPC Board Member Being a dad with kidney disease is something that I never imagined when I was younger.  Actually, I never once pictured myself as a person who would be challenged by kidney failure, even though I watched my dad "Big Gene" struggle with end stage renal failure all my life until his death when I was 12 years old. Now, my weeks each have an automatic 16 hours at the dialysis center (20 hours with travel) during “prime time” completely scheduled for me until I receive a transplant.  Those 20 hours are the perfect [...]

COVID is Surging Again

2023-01-11T13:59:28-05:00January 4th, 2023|Categories: eNews, Immunizations, Physical Health|Tags: |

We are now at the end of the third year of the COVID-19 pandemic and once again in a winter surge. According to data from the CDC, hospitalizations have surpassed what was seen this past summer and for people 60 or older – the group most vulnerable to more severe infection, that number has drastically increased since mid-November. In part, this latest surge can be attributed to XBB.1.5, the latest Omicron subvariant, which has evolved to be better at evading immunity from both vaccination and previous infection. There are other factors that play into the surge though, including time of year [...]

Improving Pregnancy Outcomes for Women on Dialysis or with a Kidney Transplant

2022-12-07T13:02:51-05:00December 1st, 2022|Categories: Dialysis, eNews, Kidney Transplant, Physical Health|

New research suggests that pregnancy outcomes are improving for women on dialysis or with a kidney transplant. Hayet Baouche, MPH, of APHP-Necker-Enfants Malades Hospital, REIN Registry in Paris, France and colleagues reported in Clinical Kidney Journal that from 2010 – 2020, the frequency women on dialysis becoming pregnant increased. There was a decrease in hypertensive disorders of pregnancy and polyhydramnios, as well as lower rates of neonatal and perinatal deaths compared to previous decades, likely attributed to advancements in obstetric and neonatal care, and progress in fetal monitoring and dialysis treatments. A systematic review of 14 retrospective and prospective studies [...]

Supreme Court Erases Kidney Patients’ Insurance Protections

2022-11-02T22:09:11-04:00October 27th, 2022|Categories: Costs for Treatment, The Kidney Citizen, Treatment|

By Megan Hashbarger, DPC Vice President of Government Relations and Jackson Williams, DPC Vice President of Public Policy A U.S. Supreme Court ruling has nullified the law that protects dialysis patients from discrimination by insurers, threatening the system of financing kidney care that has stood for 40 years. The Court ruled that employer health plans may limit dialysis benefits. For four decades, employers understood the law as prohibiting limitations that only applied to dialysis. Some health benefit consultants encouraged a few small employers to disregard the law by paying no more than Medicare rates for dialysis. DaVita [...]

Navigating a Renal Diet: Decoding the Mystery

2022-11-02T21:39:30-04:00October 27th, 2022|Categories: Dialysis, Kidney Transplant, Nutrition, Staying Healthy, The Kidney Citizen|

By Fanny Sung Whelan, MS, RDN, LDN How to navigate a renal diet based on your kidneys’ needs No matter what stage of kidney disease you’re in, all of the different diet recommendations can cause your head to spin. Pair it with other conditions you may have, and you’ve got a real recipe for confusion! So how can you sort out all of the differences in what you can and can’t eat? Here we are going to outline the diet guidelines for the different stages of kidney disease. Disclaimer: it is important to discuss any diet changes with your [...]

Digital Health Records – You can now access them, but not easily

2022-10-13T12:03:40-04:00October 7th, 2022|Categories: eNews, Quality of Life, Treatment|

On October 6, 2022, new federal rules took effect that require health care organizations to give patients unrestricted access to their digital health records. These rules that were passed under the 21st Century Cares Act are designed to empower patients by not only giving them the ability to access their own data, but also decide who to share that data with, which was previously not the case. This means that patients can better understand their care, shop for services, and engage in their own research. It also removes roadblocks such as fees and delays that were the norm for patients requesting [...]

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