American Kidney Fund Receives New Support for Educational Know Your Kidneys™ Campaign


The kidney disease prevention and management campaign expands kidney health education to underserved populations

ROCKVILLE, Md. (October 7, 2021)—The American Kidney Fund (AKF) today recognizes new support from Otsuka America Pharmaceutical, Inc. and Boehringer Ingelheim/Lilly for AKF’s ongoing nationwide education campaign, Know Your Kidneys™, aimed at empowering individuals to fulfill life’s possibilities by preventing or slowing the progression of chronic kidney disease (CKD). This support will make it possible for AKF to continue to reach those most at-risk for CKD with important messages about the need to know your kidneys.

One in seven Americans has kidney disease, yet the vast majority with early CKD—96%—are unaware of it because it typically has no symptoms until the late stages when the kidneys are already badly damaged. The Know Your Kidneys campaign encourages Americans to better understand the central role their kidneys play in their overall health and to take action to ensure early diagnosis and proper management of CKD, along with its main precursors high blood pressure and diabetes, to help prevent or slow the progression.

“We are very appreciative that our new partners understand the urgency behind our efforts to improve awareness of kidney health and increase access to educational tools that will help Americans receive an earlier diagnosis of kidney disease and even prevent it altogether,” said LaVarne A. Burton, AKF President and CEO. “We’ve seen great engagement so far with Know Your Kidneys and hope to reach even more at-risk individuals, particularly people of color, who are more likely to progress to kidney failure due to persisting disparities in care that prevent them from receiving an early diagnosis.”

The campaign has a positive message: by knowing the state of your kidneys, you can ultimately know a longer, healthier life. It features educational content and downloadable discussion guides to encourage patients to start critical conversations with their health care teams to protect their kidneys before and after a kidney disease diagnosis.

“More than a third of U.S. patients who receive a kidney failure diagnosis have little or no nephrology care prior to reaching the point of needing dialysis or a kidney transplant to survive,” said Burton. “By continuing Know Your Kidneys, we hope more Americans can be aware of their kidney function and access early intervention to help slow or stop the progression of kidney disease to kidney failure.”

About the American Kidney Fund

As the nation’s leading independent nonprofit working on behalf of the 37 million Americans with kidney disease, the American Kidney Fund is dedicated to ensuring that every kidney patient has access to health care, and that every person at risk for kidney disease is empowered to prevent it. AKF provides a complete spectrum of programs and services: prevention outreach, top-rated health educational resources, and direct financial assistance enabling the nation’s low-income dialysis and transplant patients to access lifesaving medical care. AKF holds the highest ratings from the nation’s charity watchdog groups, including Charity Navigator, which includes AKF on its “top 10” list of nonprofits with the longest track records of outstanding stewardship of the donated dollar, and GuideStar, which has awarded AKF its Platinum Seal of Transparency.

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