Advocacy and Public Policy

Advocacy and Public Policy

Shaping Public Policy for Nephrology Health Professionals

ASN promotes the highest quality care by serving as the professional organization informing health policy in kidney disease. Click on the magnifying glass to search by keyword or follow links at the left for more information.


ASN Endorses Immuno Bill, Commends Rep. Burgess and Rep. Kind for Leadership

ASN commends Rep. Michael Burgess, MD, and Rep. Ron Kind for introducing the Comprehensive Immunosuppressive Drug Coverage Act of 2016 and joins them in advocating for passage of important new legislation to provide all kidney transplant recipients with lifetime access to immunosuppressive drugs.

Posted: Thursday, September 22 @ 5:10 PM

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ASN Input on Physician Payment Changes for 2017 to CMS

ASN shared suggestions for improvement with CMS regarding proposed changes to physician payment policy, emphasizing the importance of home dialysis access, vascular access care, and the nephrologist as a care coordinator for kidney patients.

Posted: Wednesday, September 07 @ 10:32 AM

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ASN Comments on ESRD Bundle, QIP, AKI Care, New Care Delivery Models

ASN shared input on proposed changes to the ESRD program and the Quality Incentive Program with CMS, as well as recommendations concerning AKI care and future new CKD care delivery models.

Posted: Tuesday, August 23 @ 4:18 PM

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Proposed Kidney Disease Prize Competition Featured on Huffington Post

In a Huffington Post blog, ASN and XPRIZE champion a global prize competition to “bring together scientists and innovators to catalyze transformative innovation.” At the White House Organ Summit in June, ASN announced its commitment of the first $7 million for a competition in partnership with the XPRIZE Foundation to develop an alternative to dialysis as a renal replacement therapy.

Posted: Tuesday, July 19 @ 10:51 AM

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ASN Comments on MACRA, Influences New Physician Payment System

ASN provided constructive input to Medicare regarding the proposed new system for paying doctors, emphasizing unique aspects of nephrology and kidney patient care that require special consideration

Posted: Wednesday, June 29 @ 5:05 PM

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ASN and KHI Partner with White House at Organ Summit

On June 13, 2016, ASN and its public-private partnership with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration—the Kidney Health Initiative (KHI)—participated in a summit the White House convened to address the organ shortage crisis. At the summit, ASN and KHI announced three new commitments to improve treatment options and transplantation access for patients with kidney diseases.

Posted: Monday, June 13 @ 1:13 PM

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Kidney Health Advocacy Day 2016

ASN and AAKP headed to Capitol Hill to urge Congress to support the Living Donor Protection Act on Thursday, April 21. Learn more and join their advocacy efforts!

Posted: Tuesday, April 19 @ 5:14 PM

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ASN and ASPN Rally Record Support for Kidney Research Funding

In an unprecedented show of support, 35 kidney patient and health professional organizations, dialysis providers, and coalitions have joined ASN and ASPN in urging Congress to increase kidney research funding in 2017. Congress increased funding for NIH in 2016, a top ASN policy priority.

Posted: Thursday, March 17 @ 11:51 AM

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ASN Endorses Living Donor Protection Act of 2016

ASN endorses and is advocating for passage of the Living Donor Protection Act of 2016. This bill prohibits life, disability, and long term care insurance companies from denying or limiting coverage and from charging higher premiums for living organ donors, enabling more Americans to consider living donation.

Posted: Wednesday, February 24 @ 6:17 PM

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ASN Provides Input to Senate Finance Work Group on Chronic Conditions Legislation

ASN provided input on policies to improve care for patients with chronic conditions to the Senate Finance Committee Chronic Care Working Group, responding to the working group's white paper on potential options for a bill.

Posted: Friday, February 05 @ 1:42 PM

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ASN Responds to Proposed Human Subject Research Regulation Changes

ASN is advocating on your behalf to decrease administrative burdens and ambiguity for investigators, institutions, and institutional review boards, as well as to make rules governing clinical trials more effective in protecting research subjects.

Posted: Monday, January 11 @ 10:15 AM

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Newt Gingrich Challenges Congress to Increase Kidney Research Funding

Former Speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives, Newt Gingrich, spotlights the disparity between federal investments in kidney research and Medicare spending on kidney care in an op-ed on FoxNews.com. Speaker Gingrich notes that federal investments in kidney research are less than 1% of total Medicare costs for patients with kidney disease.

Posted: Monday, December 21 @ 5:23 PM

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NIH and VA Research Big Winners in 2016 Federal Budget

The 2016 budget deal passed by Congress includes significant increases in funding for research, enacting a top ASN Advocacy Priority. The bill increases the budget for the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases by 3.6%. The bill also increases the budgets for the Department of Veterans Affairs Research Program by 7.1% and the National Institutes of Health overall by 6.6%. These increases come after essentially flat budgets since 2010 and constitute a major win for ASN advocacy efforts, researchers, and kidney patients nationwide.

Posted: Monday, December 21 @ 5:06 PM

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Three ASN Recommendations Included in New NIH 5-Year Strategic Plan

Bolstering the National Institutes of Health’s (NIH) focus on research that advances kidney disease and nephrology has been a top ASN advocacy priority in 2015. Reflecting ASN’s input, the new NIH Strategic Plan includes three of ASN’s key recommendations: considering burden of disease in funding allocations, enhancing workforce diversity, and reducing the administration burden.

Posted: Monday, December 21 @ 5:04 PM

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Top Ten ASN Advocacy Victories in 2015

ASN 2015 Advocacy Victories

Posted: Tuesday, November 03 @ 7:01 PM

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ASN Organizes Kidney Community Advocacy Day

On September 10, 2015, ASN led 100 advocates from 16 kidney patient and health professional organizations for the second straight year in Washington, DC for Kidney Community Advocacy Day. Advocates met with nearly 120 congressional offices, including 10 members of Congress, to build support for more investments in kidney research and protections for living organ donors.

Posted: Thursday, October 08 @ 3:28 PM

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ASN Endorses Medicare Telehealth Parity Act of 2015

ASN is advocating for the Medicare Telehealth Parity Act of 2015, and commends lead sponsors Rep. Diane Black (TN-6), Rep. Gregg Harper (MS-3), Rep, Mike Thompson (CA-5) and Rep. Peter Welch (VT-At-Large) for their leadership on this important issue.

Posted: Thursday, October 08 @ 2:10 PM

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ASN Comments on CY2016 Physician Fee Schedule

ASN provided comments to the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services regarding the proposed 2016 physician fee schedule rule.

Posted: Thursday, September 17 @ 7:57 AM

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ASN Responds to CMS ESRD PPS/QIP Proposed Rule

ASN advocated for changes to improve the ESRD QIP/PPS program in responding to the Medicare proposed rule.

Posted: Monday, August 31 @ 3:05 PM

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ASN Calls on NIH to Prioritize Kidney Research

ASN urged the National Institutes of Health (NIH) to allocate funding based on disease burden, opportunities for improving overall public health, and the federal cost of care in response to the agency's proposed framework for developing a new five-year strategic plan. Despite the medical and economic burden of kidney diseases, NIH invests less per patient in kidney research than many other diseases.

Posted: Thursday, August 20 @ 3:10 PM

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ASN Advocacy: 21st Century Cures Act Passes House

In a rare show of bipartisan support, the U.S. House of Representatives passed a top ASN legislative priority. The 21st Century Cures Act will help patients with kidney disease by speeding the discovery, development, and delivery of new treatments. The bill provides NIH an additional $8.75 billion and the FDA an additional $550 million. The Senate is currently developing its own version of the bill.

Posted: Friday, July 10 @ 4:52 PM

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ASN Endorses Medicare Telehealth Parity Act 0f 2015

ASN endorses Medicare Telehealth Parity Act 0f 2015, which would allow home dialysis and potentially other kidney patients to communicate with their care team via telehealth. ASN and commends original cosponsors Rep. Diane Black (TN-6), Rep. Gregg Harper (MS-3), Rep. Mike Thompson (CA-5), and Rep. Peter Welch (VT-At-Large) for their leadership

Posted: Tuesday, July 07 @ 9:25 AM

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ASN Responds to Senate Finance Request for Chronic Care Improvement Ideas

The Senate Finance Committee requested input from ASN and other stakeholders on policy levers to improve care and reduce costs for patients with multiple chronic conditions. Read ASN's recommendations, including a new CKD care model and strategies to increase transplantation.

Posted: Thursday, July 02 @ 11:45 AM

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Congress Threatens to Eliminate AHRQ

A bill introduced in the U.S. House of Representatives last week would eliminate the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) and prohibit patient-centered research. AHRQ is the only agency conducting health services research to improve the delivery and quality of care for patients with kidney disease and other health conditions. Please join ASN in fighting to save AHRQ and patient-centered research. Take 10 seconds to send your members of Congress a pre-composed email by clicking on "Read more" below.

Posted: Monday, June 22 @ 2:43 PM

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ASN Comments on AHRQ Renal Masses and Localized Renal Cancer Report

ASN responds to an Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) draft systematic review on "Management of Renal Masses and Localized Renal Cancer". In the letter, ASN calls for further study of those with more advanced CKD (Stage 3B and above) before determining who should have nephron-sparing surgery or radical nephrectomy.

Posted: Thursday, June 18 @ 12:32 PM

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ICD 10 and Concerns Regarding New Revisions to CMS 2728 Form

An important part of public health surveillance and dialysis practice and research, Form 2728 is a crucial element of care for beneficiaries with kidney failure. ASN urges CMS to postpone the planned revisions to the form until the agency incorporates the input of the kidney community to help refine the classification system in accordance with ICD-10, while remaining sufficiently detailed and economical to serve the mission of facilitating dialysis care.

Posted: Tuesday, June 16 @ 11:19 AM

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ASN Supports 21st Century Cures Legislation

ASN commends the House Energy and Commerce Committee for their vision and leadership on the 21st Century Cures legislation. ASN strongly supports this bipartisan initiative and believes it is a significant opportunity to accelerate research and facilitate the development of promising new treatments to the more than 20 million Americans with kidney disease. The society thanks the Committee for its efforts to engage stakeholders and solicit feedback throughout the development process, and looks forward to continued progress on this important legislation.

Posted: Monday, May 18 @ 4:02 PM

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Stand Up for NIH Kidney Research Funding

Join ASN in urging Congress to increase funding for kidney research at the National Institutes of Health (NIH) in 2016. Federal investments in kidney research are less than 1% of Medicare costs for kidney care. Research for new therapies to slow the progression of kidney disease and make dialysis more efficient would yield significant federal savings. Please take 10 seconds to send your members of Congress a pre-composed email by clicking on the "Read more" link below.

Posted: Monday, May 18 @ 11:11 AM

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Join ASN and AAKP in Kidney Health Advocacy Day Promoting Kidney Bill

On April 23, 2015, ASN leaders joined patient advocates from the American Association of Kidney Patients (AAKP) in Washington, DC to build support in Congress for a new kidney bill. Learn more about what ASN and AAKP asked Congress to do on behalf of the millions of Americans with kidney disease, and send a pre-composed email to your members of Congress asking them to sign onto this vital legislation.

Posted: Tuesday, April 21 @ 4:57 PM

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ASN and ASPN Rallies Support for NIDDK Kidney Research Funding

Nearly 35 kidney patient groups, health professional organizations, dialysis providers, and coalitions joined ASN and the American Society of Pediatric Nephrology (APSN) in urging Congress to bolster funding for the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK) and kidney research in 2016. Federal investments in kidney research are less than 1% of total Medicare costs for patients with kidney disease.

Posted: Thursday, March 19 @ 5:06 PM

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ASN Supports New Kidney Bill

ASN applauds the introduction of the Chronic Kidney Disease Improvement in Research and Treatment Act (S. 598/H.R. 1130). This legislation invests in kidney research, improves our understanding of kidney failure in minority populations, expands access to kidney disease education, and identifies barriers to transplantation, among other important actions related to kidney care and research.

Posted: Monday, March 09 @ 4:43 PM

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ASN Input on Draft Legislation "21st Century Cures Act"

ASN shared feedback on a draft bill that the House Energy and Commerce Committee prepared regarding its 21st Century Cures Initiative.

Posted: Tuesday, February 10 @ 5:30 PM

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ASN Feedback on Telehealth Draft Legislation to Energy and Commerce Committee

ASN gave feedback on draft telehealth legislation that the Energy and Commerce Committee is preparing as part of its 21st Century Cures Initiative.

Posted: Wednesday, January 28 @ 9:56 AM

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ASN Input on GME Funding to House Energy and Commerce Committee

The House Energy and Commerce Committee solicited input from ASN regarding GME funding and ways to strengthen the program.

Posted: Wednesday, January 28 @ 9:53 AM

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FDA Responds to ASN's Call to Expedite Solution to PD Shortage

FDA responded to ASN's call that the agency to do everything possible to safely expedite the evaluation and licensure of PD solution manufacturing plants located outside of the United States that have the capacity to alleviate the current PD solution shortage, and to accelerate the import of PD solution from these plants.

Posted: Friday, September 12 @ 12:25 PM

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ASN Thanks Rep. Tom Marino for GAO Report Request

Congressional Kidney Caucus Co-Chair Rep. Tom Marino asks Government Accountability Office to assess adequacy of federal investment in kidney research, advancing top ASN Public Policy Board priority.

Posted: Tuesday, September 09 @ 4:56 PM

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ASN Advocates for Improvements to ESRD Program

ASN advocated for changes to improve the Medicare ESRD program as well as the Quality Incentive Program in comments responding to a Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services proposed rule. ASN urged CMS to focus on fewer quality measures with more meaning from a patient perspective and to issue clarification on which drugs fall under the bundle, among other issues.

Posted: Tuesday, September 09 @ 4:53 PM

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ASN Comments on Physician Fee Schedule for 2015

ASN provided input to the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services regarding proposed changes to how the agency pays physicians for the care they provide to patients. Highlights included thanking CMS for responding to ASN and others’ prior calls to fix a payment discrepancy for those caring for home dialysis patients and encouraging the agency to allow nephrologists to bill for chronic care management services.

Posted: Tuesday, September 09 @ 4:52 PM

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Advocating for Transplant Legislation

On July 30, 2014, longtime friends of the kidney community Rep. Michael C. Burgess, MD (R-TX) and Rep. Jerrold Nadler (D-NY) introduced the Living Organ Donor Protection Act (H.R. 5263). This bipartisan legislation would make it easier for Americans to donate kidneys and other organs by extending the Family and Medical Leave Act coverage to living donors, ensuring they obtain time off work to donate an organ and recover, while still keeping their jobs. The bill would also protect the thousands of Americans who give the gift of life by prohibiting insurance companies from denying coverage, raising premiums, or limiting coverage because of their organ donation.

Posted: Tuesday, August 26 @ 3:53 PM

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ASN Advocating for New Kidney Legislation

ASN applauds both Congressional Kidney Caucus co-chair Rep. Tom Marino (R-PA) and longtime friend of the kidney community Rep. John Lewis (D-GA) for introducing the Chronic Kidney Disease Improvement in Research and Treatment Act (HR 4814). This legislation invests in kidney research, improves our understanding of kidney failure in minority populations, expands access to kidney disease education, and addresses the nephrology workforce crisis.

Posted: Monday, July 28 @ 11:47 AM

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ASN Defends Access to Hospice Care for Patients with ESRD

CMS rule addresses ASN concerns that patients can access both end-of-life care in hospice and dialysis care.

Posted: Monday, July 28 @ 11:10 AM

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ASN, NKF Joint FDA Food Labeling Comment Letter

ASN, NKF, and 18 other kidney-related organizations provided comments regarding the Food and Drug Administration's (FDA) proposed changes to the nutritional labeling, highlighting the importance of phosphates in the diets of people with kidney disease.

Posted: Wednesday, July 02 @ 12:00 PM

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Kidney Community Unites to Raise Awareness on Capitol Hill

On May 1, 2014, more than 100 advocates from 14 kidney patient and health professional organizations gathered in Washington, DC, for Kidney Community Advocacy Day. Advocates met with 133 congressional offices, including 19 members of Congress, to promote increased funding for kidney research and the Comprehensive Immunosuppressive Drug Coverage Act of 2013. Read more in Kidney News at the link below.

Posted: Monday, June 23 @ 11:19 AM

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New NIH & AHRQ Grant Application Submission Policy

The National Institutes of Health (NIH) and Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) announced that unsuccessful grant application resubmissions (A1) may now be presented in a new grant application (A0) without a substantial redesign of the content and scope of the project. The resubmission of ideas as new means A0s will be considered without an association to previous submissions. Reviewers will be instructed to review A0s as a new idea even if they have seen it in prior cycles. Click on "Read more" below to view the updated policy notice.

Posted: Thursday, April 17 @ 12:44 PM

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ASN President Testifies Before Congress

On Wednesday, April 9, 2014, ASN President Sharon M. Moe, MD, FASN, testified before the House Science, Space, and Technology Committee Subcommittee for Research and Technology in support of federal prize competitions to spur innovative kidney therapies. Dr. Moe underscored how competitions could provide a powerful impetus to develop more efficient and cost-effective treatments for kidney disease. Click on "Read more" below to access the hearing webcast, Dr. Moe's written and oral testimony, and a podcast interview with Dr. Moe about her testimony.

Posted: Thursday, April 10 @ 2:20 PM

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ASN and ASPN Rally Record Support for Kidney Research Funding

In an unprecedented show of support, nearly 35 kidney patient and health professional organizations, dialysis providers, and coalitions have joined together to urge Congress to increase funding for NIDDK and kidney research in 2015. Click on "Read more" below to read the joint letter.

Posted: Friday, April 04 @ 10:52 AM

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Congress passes HIV Organ Policy Equity (HOPE) Act, an ASN advocacy priority

Congress has passed the HIV Organ Transplant Equity (HOPE) Act, HR 698/S330, a major ASN policy priority. Once signed into law by the president, the HOPE Act will facilitate greater access to transplant by lifting a federal ban on research into transplanting organs from deceased HIV+ donors to HIV+ patients, one day potentially shortening the wait time for HIV+ patients and people without HIV waiting for a transplant.

Posted: Wednesday, November 13 @ 11:31 AM

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New Report Highlights Harm of Budget Cuts on Research

A new report co-sponsored by ASN from NDD United says across-the-board budget cuts are jeopardizing research and harming patients. Click on "Read more" below to read the report and then go to ASN's "Legislative Action Center" (on left) to urge Congress to protect NIH and kidney research from more cuts.

Posted: Tuesday, November 12 @ 1:25 PM

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Recommendations for the ESRD Seamless Care Organization (ESCO) Program

ASN and seven other patient and health professional organizations met with top CMS and CMMI leaders to present joint recommendations for improving the ESCO program on September 18, 2013.

Posted: Friday, November 01 @ 4:07 PM

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ASN Responds to CMS ESRD PPS/QIP Proposed Rule for 2014

The new Medicare ESRD Program Prospective Payment System (PPS) proposed rule issued by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid (CMS) includes a 10% cut to bundled payments for dialysis treatments. ASN is concerned that this cut may limit access to care for patients on dialysis and urges CMS to develop an alternative to protect this vulnerable group of patients. ASN is also reviewing whether the proposed changes to the Quality Incentive Program (QIP) are evidence-based, fair, and will not compromise the care of kidney patients.

Posted: Thursday, September 12 @ 12:05 PM

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Comprehensive Immunosuppressive Drug Coverage Bill Introduced in the Senate

United States Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) and Senator Thad Cochran (R-MS) introduced bipartisan legislation to improve the quality of life for people with kidney disease. The Comprehensive Immunosuppressive Drug Coverage for Kidney Transplant Patients Act would assist thousands of Americans under the age of 65 who are being cut off from Medicare after 36 months by extending coverage of immunosuppressive drugs for kidney transplant recipients.

Posted: Thursday, February 14 @ 5:18 PM

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Recommendations to CMMI for Integrated Care Pilot Program

Recommendations from ASN and eight other patient and health professional organizations to CMS and CMMI for a potential integrated nephrology care delivery pilot program.

Posted: Monday, October 22 @ 12:41 PM

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ASN Announces a New Partnership with the FDA

The Kidney Health Initiative (KHI) will advance scientific understanding of the patient safety and treatment implications of new and existing medical products.

Posted: Thursday, September 27 @ 10:58 AM

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