Advocacy | Patient stories

Making an Impact Beyond DC

February 28, 2024, 10:57am EST

Group of advocates at kidney advocacy meeting

By Valerie Rinck, Advocacy Manager

On February 27th over 160 Voices for Kidney Health advocates headed to Capitol Hill to close out the 11th Annual Kidney Patient Summit. Advocates took over 200 meetings, bringing the kidney voice to the decision-makers to advance our legislative priorities. The National Kidney Foundation wants you to join in the festivities by participating remotely! There are numerous impactful actions individuals can take from the comfort of their own homes to effect change for kidney patients and their families across the nation.

1. Raise Your Voice Locally

NKF's call to action extends far beyond the corridors of Capitol Hill. By amplifying the message within your local community, you can contribute significantly to the cause. Share information about National Kidney Month and the NKF's initiatives through social media platforms, local newsletters, or community events. Educating friends, family, and colleagues about the importance of kidney health and the need for policy reform can spark conversations and inspire others to get involved.

2. Support Legislative Priorities

NKF has identified three key legislative priorities that have the potential to significantly impact the lives of kidney disease patients:

  • Support the HRSA Organ Procurement and Transplantation Network Modernization Initiative: This new, bi-partisan initiative will greatly improve the transparency, accountability, and patient-centricity of the organ donation, procurement, and transplantation system by making must-needed systemic improvements and investments.
  • Advocate for Screening Recommendations: Encourage members of Congress to support the issuance of screening recommendations for chronic kidney disease (CKD). By reaching out to designated contacts in congressional offices, individuals can express their support for measures that would improve early detection and treatment of CKD, ultimately saving lives.
  • Back Access to Home Dialysis: Support the Improve Access to Home Dialysis Act, which aims to expand access to home dialysis training and support services. Individuals can voice their support for legislation that empowers patients with kidney failure to pursue home-based treatment options, enhancing their quality of life.
  • Sponsoring the National Living Donor Protection Act: Passed in 32 states, the Living Donor Protection Act (LDPA), a bipartisan legislation designed to safeguard individuals who donate organs from discrimination when obtaining life, long-term care, and disability insurance coverage.

Take action now! 

3. Stay Informed and Engaged

Keeping abreast of developments in kidney health policy and legislation is essential for effective advocacy. Individuals can stay informed by subscribing to NKF’s advocacy newsletters, becoming a member of the Kidney Advocacy Committee, and engaging with advocacy resources provided by the organization. By remaining actively involved in the conversation surrounding kidney health, individuals can continue to advocate for positive change and support the NKF's mission to improve outcomes for kidney disease patients nationwide.

Sign up to receive NKF advocacy alerts.

Want to Join us in DC Next Year?

Are you interested in advancing policies to better the lives of people with kidney disease and their families? Join our choir of advocates! The Kidney Advocacy Committee (KAC) has over 350 dedicated advocates and growing. KAC members use their personal experience and expertise to influence policy at the federal and state levels. Advocates are not just patients, but living donors, caretakers, healthcare professionals, and families that have been impacted by kidney disease. 

Learn more about our KAC and access the application.

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