CNSW Articles, Presentations and Projects

CNSW Advocacy Series

In order to provide the best clinical care to assist patients, families and staff, social workers in nephrology settings are increasingly focused on the topic of advocacy. The National Kidney Foundation Council of Nephrology Social Workers (NKF-CNSW) presents the Advocacy Series, a combination of live and pre-recorded webinars aiming to equip nephrology social workers with knowledge and strategies to enhance their practice. 

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Insurance Toolkit Members only

A compilation of insurance information with regard to Transplant, Veteran's Administration (VA) Benefits, COBRA, Coordination of Benefits, and Medicare Part D. It also has a listing of helpful terms to know relating to Commercial Insurance and ESRD, and the Affordable Care Act.

Download (*PDF 251kb)

CNSW Salary and Caseload Survey – Final Summary Descriptive Results Members only

CNSW and NKF conducted a salary survey of nephrology social workers. Final summary descriptive results are available to national CNSW members and participants of the survey.

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Wellness Programming: Nephrology social work expands its role in renal disease management Members Only

A copy of an article by Stephanie Johnstone, LCSW in Nephrology News & Issues:

Excerpt from the article: The social work team at FMCNA-San Diego developed wellness programming in 2001 when nurses became frustrated with nonadherent hemodialysis patients at the clinic. The team's efforts to increase education or apply pressure on these patients seemed to have little impact. Staff identified these patients on their care plans as "unmotivated" or "self-destructive" after the team had run out of intervention options, which only disempowered them further. The social workers knew there was more to this problem, and that the barriers were not always a lack of education. When they took the time to look into the eyes and hearts of these patients, they didn't see "I didn't know" or "I don't care." Instead they saw, "I want to change, help me." The social workers reorganized their services, steering away from unskilled clerical tasks and focusing on the nonadherence issue. "Our [dialysis clinic] management team was very supportive," said Carolyn King, MSW, a member of the San Diego SW team for more than 12 years. "They needed us in this area much more than they needed us faxing and copying travel forms. They felt pressure to reduce missed treatments and fluid gains. They needed to decrease the stress on the team in these areas. They trusted we could help, and they were right.

Download (*PDF 523kb)

A Meandering Journey

This series of five audio files is a free educational toll that is intended to introduce relaxation and mindfulness meditation techniques to people experiencing chronic illness. (Courtesy of CNSW member Gary Petingola, BSW, MSW, RSW)

Download PDF booklet

Download audio files:
(Right clack and choose to save link as…, or click on the link to stream)

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Making Peace with Fluid: Social Workers Lead Cognitive-Behavioral Intervention to Reduce Health-Risk Behavior Members Only

A copy of an article by Stephanie Johnstone and Donna Halshaw originally published in the December 2003 issue of Nephrology News and Issues.

Excerpt from the article: The need for a new and more successful approach to the challenge of fluid management for hemodialysis patients encouraged the social work department at Fresenius Medical Care North America/San Diego to design the "Making Peace with Fluid" class. The class drew from various models of behavior change that were applicable to health care environments. Behavioral, motivational, paradoxical, and interpersonal interventions were laced through just three class sessions.

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NASW/NKF Clinical Indicators for social work and psychosocial services in nephrology settings

The National Association of Social Workers, in conjunction with the Council of Nephrology Social Workers of the National Kidney Foundation, has established model clinical indicators to be used in the systematic monitoring of quality and appropriateness of patient care and in quality improvement activities. The application of clinical indicators is part of an ongoing process of quality assurance and improvement, encompassing testing, improvement, and innovation. These model indicators serve as broad guidelines to allow for the varied needs of diverse institutions while encouraging more uniformity in social work quality assurance.


Social Work: An Essential to CKD Care

A powerpoint presentation presented May 5, 2005 in Washington, DC, by Elizabeth J. Clark, PhD, ACSW, MPH, the NASW Executive Director.

Download (*PDF 51kb)

Council of Nephrology Social Workers Position Statement on Social Work Staffing

A position statement prepared by the 1998 Executive Committee of the Council of Nephrology Social Workers based on the "NKF/CNSW Approach to Patient/Social Worker Staffing" which is a research-based staffing guideline.

Download (*PDF 17kb)

CNSW Affiliate Satisfaction Survey Members Only

In January 2004, the CNSW Executive Committee undertook a survey of CNSW Chapters to assess how chapters interact with NKF affiliates, and to identify areas for discussion and work. The survey was also proposed as a mechanism to generate ideas and conversation between individual CNSW chapters and their local affiliates. This is a final report for CNSW members.

Download (*PDF 60kb)

CNSW Response to the CMS-Conditions of Coverage

CNSW submitted a response to the Proposed Conditions of Coverage to the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS). This is the actual response submitted to CMS with NKF support.

Download (*PDF 149kb)

CNSW Documentation Guidelines for Dialysis and Transplant Facilities Members Only

A comprehensive list of guidelines to assist social workers in appropriate documentation practices, based on best practices and federal regulations.

Download (*PDF 24kb)

Summary of ESRD Medicare Guidelines

A document summarizing the Medicare guidelines for the ESRD benefit program.

Download (*PDF 26kb)

CMS Presentation on Medicare Coverage for People with ESRD

A comprehensive powerpoint presentation regarding Medicare Benefits for People with ESRD.

Download (*PDF 621kb)

Living with Illness - Your Options: Understanding Kidney Disease

A patient focused CNSW article on the NASW Web site Social Workers Help Starts Here summarizing many common topics about chronic kidney disease, treatment, and social workers.


Living with Illness - Emotional Rehabilitation after the Diagnosis of Chronic Kidney Disease.

A patient focused CNSW article on the NASW Web site Social Workers Help Starts Here discussing adjustment to chronic kidney disease and treatment.


CNSW Executive Committee Reports to Members Members Only

The Executive Committee periodically issues reports to its national members.

Here is a list of the reports: (*reports are PDF)

April 2013 Download

June 2011 Download

October 2009 Download

April 2009 Report Download

October 2008 Report Download

April 2008 Report Download

October 2007 Report Download

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