Press release

March is Kidney Month: American Kidney Fund spotlights kidney disease and kidney health with kidney quiz, free screenings and advocacy for living kidney donation

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE is the hub for spreading awareness of kidney disease

ROCKVILLE, Md. (March 1, 2019) – Because the vast majority of the 30 million Americans with kidney disease do not know they have it, the American Kidney Fund (AKF) is focusing attention on this silent killer during March, Kidney Month, with a range of initiatives designed to empower people with the knowledge they need to fight the disease. AKF's Kidney Month landing page,, offers quick facts and ways to get involved during March.

Chronic kidney disease (CKD) is an often-preventable condition that can go undetected until it becomes life-threatening. As the leading nonprofit working on behalf of Americans with kidney disease, AKF has planned Kidney Month activities to inform and inspire at-risk individuals, policy makers and the public about kidney disease and living kidney donation.

Free kidney health screenings: AKF runs the nation's largest free kidney health screening program, Know Your Kidneys™, which reaches thousands of at-risk individuals each year. In March, AKF plans to conduct 16 days of screenings at eight events in six cities: Southern Women's Shows in Memphis, Tennessee (March 1-3); Nashville (March 7-10); and Richmond, Virginia (March 22-24); the B'More Healthy Expo in Baltimore (March 16); the SGRho Regional Conference in Montgomery, Alabama (March 29-30); and in Washington, D.C., the AmerHealth Caritas Nutrition Wellness Day (March 16), Children's National Medical Center Health Fair (March 19) and Hoop for All Foundation Flag Football Tournament (March 23). In addition to the D.C. kidney health screening events, AKF will host a Kidney Month presentation at the Washington Senior Wellness Center (March 19). Through Know Your Kidneys™, AKF helps people understand their risk for CKD and the importance of early detection to slow down or prevent its progression to kidney failure.

Kidney Quiz: Because what you don't know about kidney disease can hurt you, AKF developed a quiz that helps people understand the important role the kidneys play in their overall health. Both correct and incorrect answers receive additional important information about kidney disease.

Free webinar for patients and caregivers: AKF's March free monthly webinar will focus on nephrotic syndrome and FSGS, two related conditions that can cause kidney failure, along with their treatments. The webinar speaker will be Dr. Kirk Campbell, an associate professor of medicine at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai in New York. The webinar is made possible by an educational grant from Mallinckrodt Pharmaceuticals.

Advocacy for living kidney donation: AKF is working in numerous states to help pass legislation that would protect living organ donors from discrimination by life, disability and long-term care insurers, and that would provide job-protected leave for donors to recover from their surgery. On March 14, World Kidney Day, AKF Ambassadors will participate in a press conference in Springfield, Illinois, alongside other advocacy groups in support of that state's living donor protection legislation. With the recent introduction of the Living Donor Protection Act of 2019 in Congress, which would make these protections law across the nation, AKF is urging people to write to their elected representatives in Washington to ask them to support this bill.

Social media campaign: Throughout the month, AKF's social media channels — FacebookTwitter and Instagram — will feature kidney facts in an engaging, shareable graphic format.

"Even though it affects 30 million Americans, kidney disease is poorly understood," said LaVarne Burton, president and CEO of the American Kidney Fund. "We want people with kidney disease to be informed and we want to help those at risk for the disease learn the risk factors, get screened and work towards preventing this disease from taking control of their life."

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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