By Kasia Michalik
In less than two weeks, physicians, administrators, medical directors and other dialysis health care providers will come together for the annual National Renal Administrators Association (NRAA) meeting, which will be held at the Savannah International Convention Center from Wednesday, October 10 to Friday, October 12.
The event will feature a medical directors workshop, welcome reception, presidential address, and daily meetings ranging from the history of ESRD Program to the Future of the ESRD Program.
"Part of the focus on this conference is looking at the past, the present and the future within the dialysis history," said Marc Chow, executive director of NRAA. " We are going to start with the past, the whole history."
Wednesday, before the conference officially begins, is dedicated to the medical directors workshop. The Forum of ESRD Networks came and put together a toolkit full of speakers that will talk about the ESRD Network, quality incentive program (QIP), and Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS).
"We think that as a highlight, for it being our 35th anniversary this year, we think it is quite appropriate to give physicians more knowledge, more information and the toolkit is a way to do it," Chow said.
The welcome reception with exhibitors will take place that evening from 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. where exhibitors and health care providers can network.
On Thursday, following the presidential address, Christopher Blagg, MD, FRCP, will give a historical review of the whole ESRD program.
"We are really pleased that we are going to be able to provide such a good speaker," Chow said.
Home therapies will be a highlight at the meeting on Thursday as well. Everything from peritoneal dialysis (PD) and home hemodialysis will be discussed. The session will be focused on what people are doing, what home options are out there, how to utilize, understand and, embrace them.
Friday brings the focus of state issues.
"We always do state breakouts which are great because then you get to have the different regions talk about the different issues that they are running into and that is always good to learn," Chow said. "State issues really impact our providers. We have been fighting a lot of battles with states over the last couple years and I think it will continue."
Barry Straube, MD, former chief medical officer for CMS, will speak about the future of the ESRD Program and his perspective on the past and current CMS.
"Around the topic of future, the Wearable Kidney, will be one aspect discussed, but our speaker will also focus on other future different potential options," Chow said.
For more information about the meeting log onto the NRAA website at www.nraa.org.