Americans with Pre-Existing Conditions Will be Left Unprotected
Quotes for attribution to National Kidney Foundation
New York, NY – December 17, 2018 – Patients with pre-existing conditions will be unprotected if a recent ruling in the case of Texas v. United States is upheld. The ruling repeals the Affordable Care Act (ACA). The National Kidney Foundation (NKF) calls on Congress, the Administration and the higher courts to right this wrong and ensure that individuals with, and at risk for, kidney disease have meaningful access to affordable healthcare and insurance coverage.”
“Kidney patients face many daily challenges to manage their condition, keep it from progressing and just to stay alive. The Texas v United States ruling will leave this vulnerable patient group without the necessary protections to ensure that they are not denied access to or charged more for health insurance coverage due to their condition.”
“The National Kidney Foundation is also deeply concerned that our patient population, including living organ donors, will face a lifetime of unpredictable costs and discrimination in insurance coverage and benefits without key protections that are part of the ACA. Chronic Kidney Disease (CKD) is the 9th leading cause of death in the United States and those who progress to end stage renal disease (ESRD) require dialysis or a kidney transplant with a lifetime need of immunosuppressive drugs to survive. This ruling jeopardizes the lives of patients and undermines critical progress made in ensuring more kidney patients have access to health care, including earlier intervention and transplants.”
Editor’s Note: View a joint statement from patient groups speaking out against the ruling here.
Kidney Disease Facts
In the United States 30 million adults are estimated to have chronic kidney disease—and most aren’t aware of it. 1 in 3 American adults are at risk for chronic kidney disease. Risk factors for kidney disease include diabetes, high blood pressure, heart disease, obesity and family history. People of African American, Hispanic, Native American, Asian or Pacific Islander descent are at increased risk for developing the disease. African Americans are 3 times more likely than Whites, and Hispanics are nearly 1.5 times more likely than non-Hispanics to develop end stage renal disease (kidney failure).
Nearly 680,000 Americans have irreversible kidney failure, or end-stage renal disease (ESRD), and need dialysis or a kidney transplant to survive. Over 475,000 ESRD patients receive dialysis at least three times per week to replace kidney function. 121,000 people started ESRD treatment in 2014, of which 118,000 started dialysis.
NKF Living Donation Resources
Nearly 100,000 Americans are waiting on a kidney transplant right now. To help increase living organ donation, the National Kidney Foundation’s THE BIG ASK: THE BIG GIVE® platform provides nationwide outreach, and includes training and tools that help patients and families find a living donor. THE BIG ASK: THE BIG GIVE includes direct patient and caregiver support through our toll-free help line, 855-NKF-CARES, peer mentoring from a fellow kidney patient or a living donor, online communities, an advocacy campaign to remove barriers to donation, and a multi-media public awareness campaign. All of these resources are free and designed to teach kidney patients, or their advocates, how to make a “big ask” to their friends, loved ones, or community to consider making a “big give,” a life-saving living organ donation. For more information visit www.kidney.org/livingdonation.
The National Kidney Foundation (NKF) is the largest, most comprehensive and longstanding organization dedicated to the awareness, prevention and treatment of kidney disease. For more information about NKF visit www.kidney.org.