KEEP Healthy

KEEP ResearchLack of Health Insurance = Risk Factor for Kidney Disease and Death

Recent data from the Kidney Early Evaluation Program (KEEP) showed that uninsured adults at high risk for developing kidney disease were more likely to progress to kidney failure or death than those with private health insurance coverage. Researchers studied more than 86,500 KEEP participants and found that uninsured KEEP participants were 82% more likely than privately insured participants to die and 72% more likely to experience kidney failure. Compared with people covered by private or public insurance, those without insurance were more likely to be younger, Hispanic and less likely to have seen a physician in the past year.

"Even among patients with normal or mildly decreased kidney function, the risk of developing kidney failure was higher for those without insurance than for those with private insurance. In the at-risk population, lack of insurance appears to be a risk factor for kidney failure, even in patients without advanced kidney disease," says Dr. Jurkovitz, a member of the KEEP Steering Committee and the lead study author.

In the United States, 73 million adults are at risk for chronic kidney disease due to having high blood pressure or diabetes. The National Kidney Foundation encourages all those at risk for kidney disease to get their kidneys checked regularly.

If you have insurance coverage questions, our patient hotline offers support for people affected by kidney disease, organ donation or transplantation. It's dedicated to patients, family members and caregivers. To speak with a trained professional who will answer your questions and listen to your concerns, call toll-free at 1-855-NKF-Cares (653-2273).

Back to top