Nation’s Kidney Care Community Urge Legislators to Prioritize Kidney Disease Prevention, Access, and Innovation

June 14, 2023

Kidney Community Leadership Visit Capitol to Press Congress to Pass Bipartisan Legislation to Address Nation’s Kidney Disease Epidemic

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Kidney Care Partners – the nation’s leading kidney care multi-stakeholder coalition representing patient advocates, physician organizations, health professional groups, dialysis providers, researchers and manufacturers – convened today on Capitol Hill to demonstrate support for policies which would ensure education, research, and innovation continue expanding patient choice and address the growing public health crisis of chronic kidney disease (CKD).

“Together, the kidney care community is fighting for policies that will meaningfully improve prevention efforts, patient access, and quality of care for the 37 million Americans living with kidney disease,” said John P. Butler, Chair of Kidney Care Partners. “We thank our nation’s lawmakers for meeting with us to discuss bipartisan solutions that emphasize nephrology workforce development, disease prevention, and protections for patients living with chronic kidney disease (CKD) and end-stage renal disease (ESRD).”

KCP advocates urge Congress to prioritize pending legislation, the Chronic Kidney Disease Improvement in Research and Treatment Act. The bill would allow Medicare beneficiaries to learn more about their options after being diagnosed with kidney disease by expanding access to prevention, screening, and education resources. It also creates sustainable payment to incentivize innovation for kidney care in both Medicare fee-for-service and Medicare Advantage. Further, provisions in the legislation ensure accurate Medicare payment to address the workforce crisis and boost the workforce in underserved areas. Finally, the legislation helps alleviate the financial burden on Medicare beneficiaries by including a Medigap expansion to reduce out-of-pocket costs for these patients.

KCP advocates also voiced support for clarifying the Medicare Secondary Payer Act by reinstating vital safeguards for individuals living with kidney failure who seek to maintain their private health insurance coverage prior to transitioning to Medicare after the coordination period. Legislative action is urgently needed in the wake of the U.S. Supreme Court’s ruling in Marietta v. DaVita, which has caused great concern among the nation’s kidney disease and patient advocacy groups whose access to their current insurance coverage is being seriously threatened. Any cost associated with this clarification could be offset by further delaying the inclusion of oral-only drugs into the ESRD prospective payment system bundle, a policy that enhances patient access to needed therapies and that Congress has authorized in prior years.  

Given the growing population of Americans living with kidney disease, KCP also stressed the need for members of Congress to join the bipartisan Congressional Kidney Caucus, which plays a vital role in educating members of Congress about issues related to kidney health.

“With more than 130,000 Americans diagnosed with ESRD each year, it’s critical that policymakers act now to expand prevention efforts, extend Medicare protections, and support innovative treatment approaches to kidney care,” added Butler.

For additional information about KCP’s fly-in and legislative priorities, visit: