Press release

American Kidney Fund Applauds Creation of Kidney Disease Prevention and Education Task Forces in Louisiana and Colorado

ROCKVILLE, Md. (July 29, 2021)  — The American Kidney Fund (AKF) commends Louisiana Secretary of State Kyle Ardoinand and Colorado Governor Jared Polis for signing into law legislation that will establish Kidney Disease Prevention and Education Task Forces in their states.

These task forces will study and make policy recommendations for increasing kidney disease awareness in Colorado and Louisiana, and work with policymakers, public health entities and educational institutions to create educational health programs to reduce the burden of kidney disease on residents of both states. Each task force will also address health disparities by studying the disproportionately high rates of kidney disease among racial and ethnic minorities in their state — a longtime policy focus of AKF.

In Louisiana, AKF worked closely with HCR87 primary sponsor, Representative Robert "Bob" Owen (District 76), to move the bill through the State Legislature. In Colorado, AKF worked closely with several HB21-1171 sponsors, including Representatives Mary Bradfield (House District 21) and Brianna Titone (House District 27), and Senators Janet Bucker (Senate District 28) and Dennis Hisey (Senate District 2) to move the bill through the General Assembly. AKF is grateful for all their support.

AKF is spearheading the implementation of kidney disease task force legislation in states across the country to help combat the rising incidence of kidney disease nationwide. AKF has worked to pass laws creating similar task forces this year, and in Illinois and Texas in 2020.

"AKF is committed to reducing the rising incidence of kidney disease in the United States, and we welcome legislation to tackle this issue in states across the country that share our common goal," said LaVarne A. Burton, AKF President and CEO. "We applaud elected officials in Louisiana and Colorado for taking this important step to address kidney disease in their states and we look forward to supporting these task forces however we can."

AKF expects the recommendations made by these task forces to be meaningful and to specifically address: underlying social determinants of health that lead to kidney disease; available treatments, including increasing living organ donor transplant availability and access to greater modality options for patients; and kidney disease education and outreach, particularly among the racial and ethnic communities that are most affected by this disease.

Nearly 14,000 Louisianans and 8,500 Coloradans with kidney failure rely on dialysis or a kidney transplant to keep them alive. Of the 2,000 Louisianans on the organ transplant waiting list, 1,800 — or 90% are waiting for a kidney. Of the 1,600 Coloradans on the organ transplant waiting list, more than 1,350 — or 85% — are waiting for a kidney.

About the American Kidney Fund

The American Kidney Fund (AKF) fights kidney disease on all fronts as the nation’s leading kidney nonprofit. AKF works on behalf of the 37 million 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. With programs that address early detection, disease management, financial assistance, clinical research, innovation and advocacy, no kidney organization impacts more lives than AKF. One of the nation’s top-rated nonprofits, AKF invests 97 cents of every donated dollar in programs, earning the highest 4-Star rating from Charity Navigator for 20 years in a row as well as the Platinum Seal of Transparency from Candid, formerly GuideStar.

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