WASHINGTON–Seven-time NBA All-Star Alonzo Mourning joined with representatives of Kidney Care Partners (KCP) on Capitol Hill today to announce significant improvements in patient care outcomes and urge Congress to maintain its commitment to dialysis patients by refraining from enacting any additional funding cuts or further restructuring the Medicare end-stage renal disease (ESRD) benefit.
Mourning, a member of the 2006 NBA championship Miami Heat team, received a kidney transplant in 2003 after being diagnosed with Focal Glomerulosclerosis, a degenerative kidney disease, in 2000. Mourning returned to the NBA following his transplant and has since been an advocate for kidney patients nationwide. Mourning has partnered with KCP on several advocacy efforts to improve kidney patients’ quality of care and quality of life.
At today’s educational briefing sponsored by the Congressional Kidney Caucus, Mourning and KCP members told lawmakers that any additional cuts to the Medicare ESRD benefit would be ill-advised and could negatively affect the future of kidney care at a time when the community is making measurable improvements in improving survival while still implementing a new bundled payment system and grappling with previously imposed cuts.
During the briefing, KCP announced the results to date of its three-year campaign to improve survivability of first-year dialysis patients, illustrating a significant, 12.3 percent decline in mortality. With the launch of the Performance Excellence and Accountability in Kidney Care (PEAK) Campaign in June 2009, members of KCP committed to reducing mortality in first-year dialysis patients. The campaign focused on patient education and key clinical care activities to achieve its goal, including case management, nutrition, anemia management, dialysis adequacy, catheter use, and psychological and social support.
To monitor progress toward the goal, PEAK’s Data Partner, Dr. Vincent Mor of Brown University, who presented the results today, and the PEAK Data/Results Panel, comprised of data and research experts from academic and research institutions, dialysis providers, and manufacturers, reviewed “real time” data from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) since the launch of PEAK. Dr. Mor reported on results from data through June 2012.