Kidney Patient Advocacy Has a New Face -- 60 of Them

The National Kidney Foundation (NKF) has launched a new patient advocacy and engagement program to expand its grassroots network at the state level.

The Kidney Action Committee is comprised of 60 patient liaisons, including one from each state, who are personally affected by kidney disease. These individuals will use their experience to advise government agencies, research organizations, and policy and health organizations on kidney disease. They will also provide input on the development of NKF public policy positions and the implementation of kidney disease education programs.

This new program builds upon NKF’s Advocacy Action Center – a group of over 60,000 people who advocate on behalf of kidney patients.

“We’re strengthening our national advocacy presence by expanding our multi-state efforts,” said Kevin Longino interim Executive Officer of the National Kidney Foundation. “These 60 individuals will be the face of NKF at the state level. It’s an important role, but we have very dedicated volunteers who are passionate about making sure the needs of kidney patients are addressed.”

Members of the Kidney Action Committee will champion NKF priorities locally and nationally through media interviews, visits with lawmakers, and special events.

“As someone affected by kidney disease, I know how crucial advocacy and engagement is to furthering our cause,” said Alexandra Harrison, a newly-elected patient liaison. “I’m looking forward to creating local momentum behind the key issues that will make a positive difference for kidney patients in California and across the country.”

With over 73 million Americans at risk for chronic kidney disease, National Kidney Foundation advocacy is more important than ever. NKF helps to shape public policy on behalf of kidney disease patients by working with Congress and federal agencies, as well as with state governments, to further legislation and regulation that improve the care and quality of life for kidney patients and organ donors.

“The expanded patient presence provided by the Kidney Action Committee will allow on-the-ground engagement to drive advocacy and organizing in all 50 states,” said Longino. “It’s a powerful program that is sure to make kidney disease a priority at the state and national level.”

 

Kidney Facts:

  • 1 in 3 American adults is at high risk for developing kidney disease today.
  • High blood pressure, diabetes, a family history of kidney failure and being over 60 are major risk factors for developing kidney disease.
  • 1 in 9 American adults has kidney disease -- and most don't know it.
  • Early detection and treatment can slow or prevent the progression of kidney disease.
  • Kidney disease risk can be reduced by controlling blood pressure and blood sugar, quitting smoking, regular exercise, and maintaining a healthy weight

The National Kidney Foundation is the leading organization in the U.S. dedicated to the awareness, prevention and treatment of kidney disease for hundreds of thousands of healthcare professionals, millions of patients and their families, and tens of millions of Americans at risk. For more information, visit www.kidney.org.