NKF Announces Social Scientist to Give Keynote

March 14, 2022, New York, NY — Healthcare professionals can play a vital role in addressing inequities in care in America, and though the issue is complicated, some solutions aren't difficult to implement, according to world-renown and Harvard University social scientist David R. Williams, Ph.D., who will give the keynote address at The National Kidney Foundation (NKF) 2022 Spring Clinical Meetings in Boston on April 7.

The address is titled “Understanding and Effectively Addressing Inequalities in Health” and will be available to the thousands of kidney care professionals attending the annual NKF Spring Clinicals Meetings from April 6-10 both in-person and virtually.

“Health care professionals can play a vital role in reducing inequity in health care as well as in health,” Williams said. “Professionals need to know the specific steps that everyone can take to make a difference for their patients and communities. Knowledge of the magnitude and determinants of health is limited even among many health care professionals and too many are unaware of the steps they can take to promote health equity.”

Williams is the Norman Professor of Public Health and chair of the Department of Social and Behavioral Sciences at the Harvard Chan School of Public Health. He is also a Professor of African and African American Studies at Harvard. As the author of over 500 scientific papers, his research focuses on the social influences on health. He is an elected member of the National Academy of Medicine, the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, and the National Academy of Sciences. He has been ranked as the Most Cited Black Scholar in the Social Sciences, worldwide, and as one of the World’s Most Influential Scientific Minds.

Dr. Williams’ speech will give participants the ability to address how socioeconomic status and racial/ethnic status affect health, identify ways in which the delivery of health care can be enhanced to improve the experience of patients, and understand which interventions on social factors such as early childhood education, neighborhood and housing conditions, and employment opportunities can lead to improvements in health.

“Dr. Williams’ work is extremely relevant to all of us who take care of patients with kidney disease,” said NKF President Paul Palevsky, MD. “Kidney disease disproportionately affects individuals who are from socioeconomically disadvantaged and minority communities. Although our recent efforts to remove race from the assessment of kidney function was a first step in addressing disparities in care, there is still much more to be done. Not only should all SCM participants listen to Dr. Williams’ address, but all health care professionals in America should pay close attention to what he has to say. We are very fortunate to have him as our keynote this year.”

Dr. Williams will give his address in Boston on April 7 at 2:30 p.m. For more information on how to hear his address, go to nkfclinicalmeetings.org.

NKF Spring Clinical Meetings

For more than 30 years, nephrology healthcare professionals from across the country have come to NKF’s Spring Clinical Meetings to learn about the newest developments related to all aspects of nephrology practice; network with colleagues; and present their research findings. The NKF Spring Clinical Meetings are designed for meaningful change in the multidisciplinary healthcare teams’ skills, performance, and patient health outcomes. It is the only conference of its kind that focuses on translating science into practice for the entire healthcare team. This year’s event will be held in Boston, April 6-10.

About Kidney Disease

In the United States, 37 million adults are estimated to have kidney disease, also known as chronic kidney disease (CKD)—and approximately 90 percent don’t know they have it.  1 in 3 adults in the U.S. are at risk for kidney disease.  Risk factors for kidney disease include: diabeteshigh blood pressureheart diseaseobesity,and family history. People of Black/African American, Hispanic/Latino, American Indian/Alaska Native, Asian American, or Native Hawaiian/Other Pacific Islander descent are at increased risk for developing the disease. Black/African American people are more than 3 times as likely as White people to have kidney failure.  Hispanics/Latinos are 1.3 times more likely than non-Hispanics to have kidney failure.

NKF Professional Membership

Healthcare professionals can join NKF to receive access to tools and resources for both patients and professionals, discounts on professional education, and access to a network of thousands of individuals who treat patients with kidney disease.  

About the National Kidney Foundation

The National Kidney Foundation (NKF) is the largest, most comprehensive, and longstanding patient-centric organization dedicated to the awareness, prevention, and treatment of kidney disease in the U.S. For more information about NKF, visit www.kidney.org