News & Events

Discover new information and educational offerings that we provide. Explore our newsletters, blogs and upcoming webinars/conference calls.

DPC Education Center 2023 Review and 2024 Preview

January 11th, 2024|

GREETINGS! This past year was an exciting one for the Education Center. We ramped up our social media platforms, allowing more direct exposure and interaction with our audience, including monthly LIVEs on Instagram and Facebook. Dr. Velma Scantlebury, our medical consultant, was available on Instagram every first Wednesday and on Facebook every third Wednesday—both occurred at 12:30 pm. Our support group, the Kidney Chat, was the second Tuesday of each month by telephone. Nephrologists, nutritionists, and social workers (just to name a few) were guests on the call, and shared important information and resources with patients. We also published an informative issue of the Kidney Citizen (our own publication!), which I encourage you to check [...]

Recipe of the Month: Baked Apples with Crumble Topping

December 1st, 2023|

Get a brand new, kidney-friendly recipe* delivered to your inbox each month, courtesy of Jessianna Saville, MS, RDN, CSR, LD, CLT, a member of the Ed Center Advisory Council and Founder & CEO of the Kidney Nutrition Institute. It’s December, which means the festive season is in full swing. Whether you’re hosting friends and family or you’ve been tasked with brining dessert to a party, you can’t go wrong with our recipe of the month: Baked Apples with Crumble Topping. Recipe developed by The KidneyRD Team Ingredients Makes 4 servings 3 tablespoons coconut oil (cold and firm) 2 tablespoons all purpose flour 2 tablespoons brown sugar packed ¼ cup rolled oats ¼ cup chopped walnuts ¼ [...]

Recipe of the Month: Roasted Red Pepper Kidney Friendly Soup

November 1st, 2023|

Get a brand new, kidney-friendly recipe* delivered to your inbox each month, courtesy of Jessianna Saville, MS, RDN, CSR, LD, CLT, a member of the Ed Center Advisory Council and Founder & CEO of the Kidney Nutrition Institute. With Thanksgiving coming up, you might be starting to plan out a menu for the big meal. November’s recipe of the month is a perfect appetizer that will please everyone at the table: Roasted Red Pepper Kidney Friendly Soup. Recipe developed by Clarissa Paimanta, RD Ingredients Makes 4 servings 2 tablespoons avocado oil 1 onion diced 2 cloves garlic minced 1 1/2 cups sliced roasted red peppers** drained 3 tablespoons low sodium homemade pesto 2 cups low sodium [...]

Recipe of the Month: Kidney Friendly Pumpkin-Free Pumpkin Pie

October 1st, 2023|

Get a brand new, kidney-friendly recipe* delivered to your inbox each month, courtesy of Jessianna Saville, MS, RDN, CSR, LD, CLT, a member of the Ed Center Advisory Council and Founder & CEO of the Kidney Nutrition Institute. October means all things pumpkin and pumpkin spice, so get into that warm and cozy feeling with: Kidney Friendly Pumpkin-Free Pumpkin Pie. Recipe developed by Jessianna Saville, MS, RDN, CSR, LD, CLT Ingredients Makes 8 servings 2 3/4 cups pureed spaghetti squash the squash can be prepared up to 2 days and stored until it's ready to be used 1/4 cup maple syrup 1/4 cup brown sugar 1/3 cup unsweetened plain almond milk 1 Tbsp olive oil or [...]

How does my loved one qualify to become a Living Kidney Donor?

September 26th, 2023|

By V. Scantlebury, MD, FACS If someone you know is thinking about becoming a living donor, then they obviously want to help save a life or drastically improve the quality of life for the person they care about. This is one of the most obvious benefits to living donation. So, what is the criteria to become a living kidney donor? Most of all, you must be at least 18 years of age and have two functioning kidneys. Potential donors must also be in good health, and this is determined by the transplant center’s medical workup. Each transplant center’s criteria may be different from another center’s requirements. A major emphasis in the workup of a potential [...]

2023-09-06 Instagram Live – Kidney Q&A

September 6th, 2023|

IG Live – September 6th: Join DPC Education Center’s healthcare consultant, Dr. Velma Scantlebury, as she answers patients’ kidney questions on the latest episode of the podcast. Find out what happens if a living kidney donor needs a kidney later in life and what your doctor means if they say you have a "sleep kidney". If the upcoming fall has you wondering what you should do for vaccinations, including the new COVID-19 booster, tune in to hear Dr. Scantlebury provide some advice for vaccine scheduling. Additionally, she touches on the importance of caretaker or family vaccines when living a kidney patient, as well as some heat safety tips if where you live hasn’t quite started to [...]

Recipe of the Month: Creamy Spinach Couscous Risotto

September 1st, 2023|

Get a brand new, kidney-friendly recipe* delivered to your inbox each month, courtesy of Jessianna Saville, MS, RDN, CSR, LD, CLT, a member of the Ed Center Advisory Council and Founder & CEO of the Kidney Nutrition Institute. September means we are starting to move into fall and craving cozier meals as the evenings start to get a little chilly. This month’s recipe makes for a perfect fall dinner: Creamy Spinach Couscous Risotto. Recipe developed by Clarissa Paimanta, RD. Ingredients Makes 2 servings 2 tbsp olive oil ½ yellow onion, chopped finely 1 clove garlic, minced ½ cup pearl couscous 2 tbsp pesto 1 ½ cups low sodium vegetable broth, divided 1 ½ cups baby spinach, optionally [...]

Why do I need my Parathyroid glands removed?

August 22nd, 2023|

By V. Scantlebury, MD, FACS Chronic kidney disease is associated with phosphate retention due to a decrease in the ability of the kidneys to filter phosphate, especially as your kidney function falls below 25 ml/min. Once you start renal replacement therapy, there is an accumulation of phosphorus that is not removed by dialysis treatments. This occurs because of both decreased filtration and decreased excretion of phosphate in various areas of the kidney. High phosphate levels are a stimulus for hyperparathyroidism: the over secretion of parathyroid hormone (PTH) from the glands. There are usually four parathyroid glands located in the neck, all are in close proximity to the thyroid gland.  The parathyroid glands are small, about [...]

A Look at Home Hemodialysis

August 3rd, 2023|

Summary by V. Scantlebury, MD, FACS Home dialysis modalities, which include home hemodialysis (HHD) and peritoneal dialysis (PD), offer several benefits for patients with end-stage kidney disease (ESKD). Home dialysis is associated with improvements in blood pressure, less issues with mineral metabolism, better sleep quality and improvement of left heart enlargement. It also allows patients the flexibility of adjusting their own dialysis schedule with more time and less cost of traveling to the dialysis center. However, despite these advantages, only 2% of all dialysis patients in the d U. S.  and 3-6% in Canada are on HHD.  The authors from a recent study point out that despite the increasing efforts to encourage home dialysis, there [...]


June 30th, 2023|

By V. Scantlebury, MD, FACS, DPC Education Center Healthcare Consultant Patients with ESRD have a reduced response to immunizations compared to the general population. This is because the response of their immune system is suppressed, leading to the inability to adequately form an antibody response or maintain antibody titers over time.  The low antibody response appears to be correlated with the degree of kidney failure. Despite the inadequate antibody response, getting vaccinated is still recommended and is most important for patients who are immunocompromised. Just as the annual influenza vaccine is updated every year to cover the most prominent strains of influenza viruses, we can expect the COVID-19 vaccines to be updated with the latest [...]

Dialysis Cruising

June 14th, 2023|

Joanne Smith, RN, Kidney Care Advocate, Fresenius Kidney Care Whether you are on in-center hemodialysis, peritoneal dialysis, or home hemodialysis taking a cruise is an option for you. It takes a bit of planning, but what vacation doesn’t? I have experienced several cruises that have offered services for dialysis patients. The treatments were performed in staterooms on the lower level of the ship, close to the infirmary. We used a portable reverse osmosis machine attached to the water from the bathroom to provide the purified water needed for the dialysis treatments. We used jugged acid and bicarbonate solutions and a standard dialysis machine. Your current doctor’s orders are followed for your estimated [...]

Chilled Cucumber Low Potassium Soup

June 14th, 2023|

Thanks to Jessianna Saville, MS, RDN, CSR, LD, CLT, a member of the Ed Center Advisory Council and Founder & CEO of the Kidney Nutrition Institute, for providing us with this great kidney-friendly recipe* to kick off summer! Chilled Cucumber Low Potassium Soup Recipe developed by Clarissa Paimanta, RD and tested by Lydia Safadi, MA, RD, LDN. Ingredients Makes 3 servings 1 large cucumber, about 2 cups, deseeded and chopped ½ avocado chopped 1 spring onion, both green and white parts, roughly chopped ½ cup plain coconut milk yogurt 2 tablespoon olive oil 2 tablespoon low sodium homemade pesto 4-5 fresh mint leaves ½ clove garlic ¼ - ½ jalapeno, seeds removed then minced, to [...]

Summer Harvest Egg Muffin Cups

June 14th, 2023|

Thanks to Jessianna Saville, MS, RDN, CSR, LD, CLT, a member of the Ed Center Advisory Council and Founder & CEO of the Kidney Nutrition Institute, for providing us with this great kidney-friendly recipe* to kick off summer! Summer Harvest Egg Muffin Cups Recipe developed by Jessianna Saville, RDN, Renal Nutrition Specialist Ingredients Makes 12 Servings 1 cup vegetables diced small or shredded (we did 1/3 c carrot, 1/3 c yellow squash, 1/3 c red pepper) 1 teaspoon oil 8 eggs 1 tablespoon fresh herbs (we used dill, basil, and parsley) 3 stalks green onion green and white thinly sliced 2 teaspoon mayonnaise Brie optional, small slices 1 teaspoon lemon zest to taste Instructions Sauté [...]

Fighting Back Against Implicit Bias in Health Care

June 14th, 2023|

Tips for how to speak up and speak out against discrimination in a medical setting Kirsten Weir The receptionist requests two forms of identification from you, yet the White person in front of you required no identification to be verified. A nurse who uses a condescending tone of voice: “you people are all alike.” A doctor who doesn’t listen to you: Having just told the doctor you have knee problems, he recommended that you walk 30 minutes every day. Are they just having a bad day — or is it implicit bias? Implicit bias is an attitude or belief based on stereotypes about a particular group. People aren’t aware of those biases; [...]

Andrew Carr Knows There’s More for Him

June 14th, 2023|

Andrew Carr Kidney disease has been part of Andrew’s life since he was 7 years old, when he was diagnosed with Hydronephrosis. Now 29, Andrew has had kidney disease for the majority of his life, but he’s guided by the principle that his kidney disease doesn’t control his life, he does. Andrew began dialysis treatments when he was 19. While Andrew’s exposure to kidney disease happened so early in his life, he does not remember how he felt about it at its outset, but vividly remembers the beginning of his dialysis treatments. For three-and-a-half years Andrew persevered through his dialysis treatments, becoming deeply engaged in reading and writing to overcome the effects [...]

Four Things You Should Know About the New Medicare Dental Rule

June 14th, 2023|

Andrea Moore, LMSW, Health Equity Specialist, Quality Insights Renal Network 5 1. Before January 1, 2023, Medicare would pay for a dental exam only for patients who were actively seeking a kidney transplant. Now, the new Medicare dental rule will pay for a dental exam and dental treatment (e.g., dental filling, teeth removal, replacement of teeth, etc.) for patients actively seeking any organ transplant. If you are living with kidney disease--with or without dialysis--Medicare will not pay for preventative care, like teeth cleanings. What this means for you: If you have Medicare and are actively seeking transplant, meaning you are undergoing transplant workup or are actively on the transplant waitlist, you have [...]

The Making of An Advocate

June 14th, 2023|

Gene Blankenship, DPC Board of Directors Thinking about Life Sitting in my recliner watching the leaves fall like big fat orange snowflakes, I see the trees begin to change colors. My immediate first thought is “How many more seasons of change will I see? Is this my last fall”? Polycystic Kidney Disease (PKD) is a constant passenger in my life. Anytime you have a passenger with you for long periods of time, you will go through events together that stamp your life. For example, as a child, I watched Eugene Taylor Jr., my dad, hook himself up every day to his peritoneal dialysis port in his stomach. PKD also introduced me to [...]

Spring 2023 State Advocacy Update

June 14th, 2023|

Elizabeth Lively, DPC Eastern Region Advocacy Director Pamela Zielske, DPC Western Region Advocacy Director The 2023 legislative session has been a busy and productive one for DPC’s state advocacy efforts. Bills impacting dialysis patients have been introduced in multiple state legislatures and in most cases have moved quickly through the legislative process. Improving access to Medigap coverage is a top priority for DPC, and we are thrilled that legislation was introduced in multiple states this session to expand Medigap access to patients under the age of 65. Last month, DPC celebrated Governor Glenn Youngkin's (R) signing of Virginia bills SB 1409 and HB 1640 into law, guaranteeing access to affordable [...]

For Mike Guffey, Working Was Key to Staying Positive

June 14th, 2023|

Mike Guffey When Mike Guffey began dialysis treatments in 2008, one of his top priorities was to ensure he had a reason to keep moving forward, something to look forward to when he got out of bed which would allow him to push through his treatment regimen. For him, that meant returning to work as quickly as he could after starting his treatments, especially given how quickly he crashed into life on dialysis. Normally based in Kansas City, Mike was working temporarily as a project manager in Colorado when he noticed something was off. He went to the doctors thinking he had altitude sickness, and the doctors told him it was likely [...]

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