Issue: August 2020 View Issue By Schawana Thaxton, DNP, NP-C Source/Disclosures Disclosures: Thaxton reports no relevant financial disclosures. Primary care, education must be part of approach to CKD strategy Issue: August 2020 View Issue By Schawana Thaxton, DNP, NP-C Source/Disclosures Disclosures: Thaxton reports no relevant financial disclosures. ADD TOPIC TO EMAIL ALERTS Receive an email when new articles are posted on Please provide your email address to receive an email when new articles are posted on . Subscribe ADDED TO EMAIL ALERTS You've successfully added to your alerts. You will receive an email when new content is published.
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Despite major advances in medical treatment related to other disease processes, kidney disease still remains in the top seven chronic diseases in America.1
Advancing American Kidney Health calls for reducing cases of end-stage kidney disease by 25% before 2030. The goal of HHS is to advance kidney health by updating the way patients with chronic kidney disease and kidney failure are diagnosed and treated, along with efforts made to improve quality of life.
The executive order signed by President Donald J. Trump called on HHS to launch an initiative to educate patients and support programs that promote kidney disease awareness.2 In the past, mass media campaigns have brought awareness to other health issues, such as opioid abuse, smoking and breast cancer. For each campaign, governmental agencies and professional societies had significant success in creating public awareness. This was achieved by educating a large portion of the population with messages through repetitive uses of current media, which include television, radio and the internet. exposure to these messages was generally passive, but it got the public talking and thinking.
In combination with the education provided by health care providers, the rate of smoking has declined, breast cancer is now diagnosed earlier and we are making progress on the war against opioid abuse.
Presently, we have several kidney organizations that promote prevention and early detection of kidney disease. They are well suited to increase production on existing patient education programs with the anticipated federal support.
To reduce the personal and financial burden of kidney disease, PCPs are the key. The major barriers they face when caring for patients with kidney disease is a lack of training and resources.3 These obstacles can be overcome through educational interventions that promote prevention and early detection of kidney disease. A study by Agrawal and colleagues shows internal medicine residents have widely differing perceptions on the right time for nephrology referral. Residency programs need to continue to educate on the benefits of early referral, leading to improved kidney disease management by facilitating a healthier relationship between the PCP and nephrologist.4
“Creativity is thinking up new things. Innovation is doing new things,” Theodore Levitt wrote. Addressing the creative thinking of Advancing American Kidney Health, we as a kidney community can innovate and break new ground. It will take a community effort to become more involved in patient and professional organizations. Through academics and research, I believe we can shape the policies that will meet the needs of those we care for with kidney disease.
- CDC, Chronic diseases in America. National Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Health promotion. www.cdc.gov/chronicdisease/resources/ infographic/chronic-diseases.htm
- HHS. Advancing American Kidney Health Initiative. Retrieved from: www.hhs.gov/about/news/2019/07/10/hhs-launches-president-trump-advancing-american- kidney-health-initiative.html
- Diamantidis, CW et al. CJASN. 2019;doi:10.2215/CJN.3054699.
- Agrawal V, et al. CJASN. 2009;doi:10.2215/CJN.03510708.
- For more information:
- Schawana Thaxton, DNP, NP-C, is a nurse practitioner in the Nephrology and Hypertension departments at Henry Ford Hospital, in Detroit, and can be reached at 313-916-2707; email: firstname.lastname@example.org.