This National Minority Health Month, Kidney Care Partners Calls for Legislative Action to Advance Kidney Health Equity

April 25, 2024

WASHINGTON – Kidney Care Partners (KCP) – the nation’s leading kidney care multi-stakeholder coalition representing patient advocates, physician organizations, health professional groups, dialysis providers, researchers and manufacturers – today recognized National Minority Health Month by calling on lawmakers to bolster their support of Americans battling chronic kidney disease (CKD) and kidney failure, known as end-stage renal disease (ESRD), which disproportionately impact communities of color.

Currently, more than 40 million Americans are living with chronic kidney disease, but research shows that Black Americans and Native Americans are 4 and 2.3 times more likely than white Americans to develop kidney failure, respectively. Meanwhile, Hispanic Americans are twice as likely to develop kidney failure than non-Hispanics. Additionally, Black and Hispanic Americans are less likely to be referred to a nephrologist until later stages of kidney disease, receive a transplant, or have access to innovative treatment options.

It’s critical that lawmakers implement solutions to break down these barriers. KCP calls on Congress to advance the Chronic Kidney Disease Improvement in Research and Treatment Act (H.R. 5027), which sets the stage for an equitable future in kidney care by expanding access to screening and education resources, boosting access to innovative treatment out-of-pocket costs for Medicare beneficiaries.

Further, to reduce premature loss of health coverage and associated cost increases, KCP also calls on Congress to support the Restore Protections for Dialysis Patients Act (H.R. 6860). If passed, this bill would protect patients’ access to private insurance coverage for life-sustaining dialysis treatments and improve transplant access.

“As we mark National Minority Health Month, Kidney Care Partners urges lawmakers to expand access to prevention resources and innovative treatments while also protecting patient choice in insurance coverage,” said Mahesh Krishnan, MD, MPH, MBA, Chair of KCP. “By championing legislation like the Chronic Kidney Disease Improvement in Research and Treatment Act and the Restore Protections for Dialysis Patients Act, we can take the standard of care to a higher level for all patients facing kidney disease and failure, particularly those in minority communities.”