| Dialysis | Kidney disease | Transplant

National Kidney Month: Empower Yourself with NKF's Kidney Health Resources

February 28, 2024, 8:15am EST

Cuatro amigos sonrientes alrededor de un teléfono

It's National Kidney Month! Celebrate by taking control of your kidney health with eight NKF programs designed to help you do just that.

Table of contents
Minute for Your Kidneys Quiz
NKF Peers
Kidney Learning Center
Voices for Kidney Health
NKF Communities
Ask the Doctor
NKF Kidney Research Connect
NKF Cares

1. Minute for Your Kidneys Quiz

Person with rose tattoo on phone outside

Right now, 33% of the U.S. population is at risk of kidney disease–That’s 1 in 3 adults in America who could develop chronic kidney disease in the future and likely don’t even know it. If you have a family member or friend with high blood pressure, diabetes, heart disease, who is overweight, or has a family history of kidney disease, they may be one of them.

Share this one-minute quiz to help them discover if they are at risk. It may just save their life. 

2. NKF Peers

Kidney disease may leave you confused, isolated, and overwhelmed, but you don't have to go through it alone. By joining NKF Peers, you can receive one-on-one support from a trained mentor living with kidney disease, ask questions to people with real experiences, and learn about treatment options. 

"I found it very easy to connect with Christine (mentor) and instantly was relieved that I had someone that I could really be my 'true self' with about this kidney process," said Heather, an NKF Peers mentee. "The first time I spoke with her, this huge weight came off of me. I was able to finally open up and talk about my kidney disease with someone."

Get matched with or become a Peer Mentor

3. Kidney Learning Center

Parent on the computer with giggling children on them.

The Kidney Learning Center offers interactive education and support for people with kidney disease, care partners, and potential donors. Just choose the course that best fits your needs and go at your own pace. 

  1. After Transplant: Learn what to expect after receiving a kidney transplant, including information about medications, rejection, and mental health. 
  2. Becoming a Living Donor: This course teaches the benefits and risks of kidney donation and explains the process of becoming a living donor.
  3. Finding a Living Donor: Learn seven key strategies to write and share your story to find a living donor.
  4. First Steps to Transplant: Beginner's guide to getting a kidney transplant that covers the evaluation and surgery.

Bookmark this page and watch for new Kidney Learning Center programs

4. Voices for Kidney Health

National Kidney Foundation's Voices for Kidney Health is a community of patients and care partner advocates working with elected officials and other public leaders to help those facing the challenges of kidney disease and promote better kidney health. But we can't do it without you. Your story is what influences public policy regarding kidney health, organ donation, and transplantation. 

Here's what two Voices for Kidney Health Advocates have to say about their advocacy:

"New advocates find a supportive network of people going through all kinds of different types of kidney disease, genetic kidney disease, acute kidney injury, end-stage transplant, and all the different stages," said Armand Halter, transplant recipient and Voices advocate. "They're able to come out of their shell and feel less alone. They find a community where they belong, and seeing them is great."

"NKF means I get answers that are straightforward and easy to understand. I get support if I need and have someone to talk to. I never feel alone," said Maria Elena Grijalv, transplant recipient and Voices advocate. "Be an advocate by volunteering. Fill the void. We, the patients, are the people who know it best. The human touch is best from those who've been there."

See how you can take action and make a difference.

5. NKF Communities

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Our communities are the perfect place to share your experiences and connect with others on kidney health, kidney disease, and kidney transplants. 

"I want to thank all forum members for your invaluable assistance," said a member of the kidney disease forum. "It hasn't been easy and I still have a long way to go but you never know which way the pendulum will swing."

NKF Communities: 

6. Ask the Doctor

Two people in kitchen looking at the computer

Do you have specific questions about kidney disease for yourself, a friend, or a family member? Ask consultative nephrologist, Dr. Leslie Spry. He is the medical director of a dialysis center specializing in hypertension, dialysis, chronic kidney disease, and more.

"Most people have no symptoms until CKD is advanced. "If you wait until you have symptoms to be tested, you've waited too long," said Dr. Spry to a user asking about the warning signs of kidney disease. "Signs of advancing CKD include swollen ankles, fatigue, difficulty concentrating, decreased appetite, blood in the urine, and foamy urine."

Learn more about Dr. Spry.

7. NKF Kidney Research Connect

Make a difference in kidney research without participating in clinical trials with NKF Kidney Research Connect. You can answer questionnaires, participate in brainstorming sessions, or share health outcomes that matter most to you. Registration takes just a few minutes.

Register with NKF Kidney Research Connect and make a difference.

8. NKF Cares

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Do you have a question about kidney disease, dialysis, or transplantation? NKF Cares, our Patient Information Center can help. Speak with a trained specialist who will answer your questions and listen to your concerns.

"I can't tell you how much I appreciate your generous, kind response to my request for information. The wealth of information you provided will certainly help me to support my husband's effort to maintain the kidney function he has for as long as possible," said an anonymous NKF Cares user. "While this is certainly frightening for both of us, at least we are more confident that we are informed about better choices."

Call toll-free at 855.NKF.CARES (855.653.2273) or email nkfcares@kidney.org to get started.

Get involved

At NKF, we are committed to ensuring everyone has equitable access to kidney care and you can help! Learn how to join us in the fight for KIDNEY EQUITY FOR ALL™.

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