Press release

American Kidney Fund Activates Disaster Relief Program to Support Dialysis and Post-Transplant Patients Affected by Severe Storms in Texas

AKF has turned on its Disaster Relief Program to administer emergency grants to dialysis and post-transplant patients who have been impacted by destructive storms in the Houston area.

ROCKVILLE, Md. (May 21, 2024)  — The American Kidney Fund (AKF) has turned on its Disaster Relief Program to administer emergency grants to dialysis and post-transplant patients who have been impacted by destructive storms in the Houston area last week. AKF's Disaster Relief Program is the nation's sole rapid-response system that provides emergency financial assistance to dialysis and recent transplant patients.

Severe storms, straight-line winds, tornadoes and flooding hit the Houston area on May 16, causing significant damage. As of May 20, seven people have died due to the storms. Adding to the turmoil, as of Monday morning, more than 200,000 homes and businesses were still without power while facing increasingly hot, humid days (with heat indexes reaching 102 degrees) without access to air conditioning. 

"Our thoughts are with the thousands of people in the Houston area who have been impacted by these destructive storms," said LaVarne A. Burton, AKF President and CEO. "These devastating weather events change people's lives in an instant, but the effects can be felt long after the storm has passed — especially if you have kidney failure. AKF's disaster relief grants can help alleviate some of the burden during what is a stressful time." 

Emergency grants of $250 are now available for dialysis and post-transplant patients living in the following counties: Harris, Liberty, Montgomery, Polk, San Jacinto, Trinity and Walker. AKF will monitor the aftermath of the storms to see if additional areas will be eligible for grants. 

Disaster relief grants help patients with low incomes replace lost medications and kidney-friendly foods (which may be spoiled due to power outages), pay for temporary housing and transportation to treatment, and replace clothing and personal essentials lost due to the natural disaster or the need to evacuate with little to no notice.  

People with kidney failure are particularly susceptible to difficulties during a natural disaster, as interruptions to dialysis treatments can put them at risk for being hospitalized. AKF has developed a resource page for patients impacted by the Houston storms.

AKF has been providing emergency disaster financial assistance to kidney patients throughout all the major disasters that have struck the United States and its territories for the past three decades. Last year, AKF provided more than $70,000 in disaster relief grants to more than 500 people with kidney failure who were affected by tornadoes in Mississippi, wildfires in Hawaii, Typhoon Mawar in Guam and Hurricane Idalia in Florida.  

To donate in support of AKF's disaster relief efforts in Houston, visit AKF's website. AKF covers the administrative costs of this program so that 100% of donations may go directly to patients in need. 

Dialysis and recent kidney transplant patients who need emergency financial help should contact a social worker at their dialysis or transplant clinic for information on applying for aid or apply directly at

About the American Kidney Fund

The American Kidney Fund (AKF) fights kidney disease on all fronts as the nonprofit with the greatest direct impact on people with kidney disease. AKF works on behalf of 1 in 7 Americans living with kidney disease, and the millions more at risk, with an unmatched scope of programs that support people wherever they are in their fight against kidney disease—from prevention through transplant. AKF fights for kidney health for all through programs that address early detection, disease management, financial assistance, clinical research, innovation and advocacy. AKF is one of the nation’s top-rated nonprofits, investing 97 cents of every donated dollar in programs, and holds the highest 4-Star rating from Charity Navigator for 21 consecutive years and the Platinum Seal of Transparency from Candid, formerly known as GuideStar. 

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