People with ESRD have experienced a disproportionate impact from COVID-19. Data from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) showed that at the end of 2021, Medicare beneficiaries with ESRD had the highest rate of hospitalization among all Medicare beneficiaries — a rate more than five times higher than the hospitalization rate for Medicare beneficiaries generally. The situation is even more dire for communities of color, who are disproportionately impacted by ESRD and are experiencing higher rates of COVID-19 infection, hospitalization and deaths.
To ensure equity in the COVID-19 pandemic response, AKF advocates for policies that would:
- Improve the public health data infrastructure to modernize reporting on COVID-19 and other diseases and conditions, and to improve the collection and reporting of race and ethnicity data.
- Ensure equitable access to COVID-19 testing, treatment and vaccines for high-risk populations, including communities of color, underserved populations, and people with ESRD who are on dialysis or have a kidney transplant.
- Prioritize COVID-19 vaccine education, outreach, and access to high-risk populations who have been disproportionately affected by COVID-19, particularly communities of color and underserved populations who have also experienced medical discrimination and may have higher levels of mistrust in the health care system.
Take action on current issues
Keeping policymakers informed is critical in the fight against kidney disease. Add your voice to thousands of other voices in our Advocacy Network and help us make a difference!
Please email your members of Congress today and let them know that you are a kidney voter who urges them to take decisive action to help kidney patients.
Please contact your U.S. Representative and U.S. Senators to ask them to cosponsor the Living Donor Protection Act that will ensure that individuals who give the gift of life are protected from discrimination and are encouraged to help those in desperate need.
Medigap, or Medicare Supplement insurance, is private insurance available to Medicare beneficiaries to cover costs that Medicare does not cover.
This bill is a crucial first step in addressing our nation's growing need to prevent and address kidney disease. Please contact your U.S. Representative today and ask them to cosponsor this important piece of legislation.