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Kidney Week

Abstract: TH-PO735

National Fundholding and Support Policies for Kidney Disease Management

Session Information

Category: Diversity and Equity in Kidney Health

  • 800 Diversity and Equity in Kidney Health


  • Lee, Jiwon M., Korea Disease Control and Prevention Agency, Cheongju, Chungcheongbuk-do, Korea (the Republic of)

Chronic kidney disease (CKD) imposes a large socioeconomic burden for a country due to its lifelong medical expenses. In addition, rare genetic kidney diseases often progress to CKD and the burden is inherited in the family, which impacts national health through generations.


We reviewed the records of national fundholding system to support patients with chronic kidney disease and rare kidney diseases in the Republic of Korea, over the past 20 years.


Since the year 2001, South Korea has been running a special fundholding program which exempts medical expenses for low-income individuals with rare and/or intractable diseases, including chronic kidney disease and rare genetic kidney disease. The disease list is designated by the government and, to date, there are 1,123 rare and 24 intractable diseases supported by this fundholding system. Over the past 20 years, chronic kidney disease had the largest number of applicants. In the year 2021, there were 8,518 patients with CKD who received full-governmental coverage for their medical expenses, which approximated 200,000,000 US dollars. In addition, South Korea also supports the expenses for dialysate fluids for patients receiving peritoneal dialysis. Through this national fundholding system, the recipients are maintaining their household finance maintenance rate (which is calculated by the income and property standards) of 97% after their diagnosis of rare and/or intractable diseases including CKD.


The Republic of Korea exerts diverse national efforts and runs policies to achieve kidney health equity for individuals in the real-world social system. We hope to continue with this effort through more improved and effective strategies in the future.