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RECENT NEWS ARCHIVES

Fri./Sat., Jan. 8-9

Switching Partners (scroll down past the large scenic picture)
Blog posting from Journey of a Lifeline.

Editor's note: A dialysis patient nightmare that demonstrates the corporation mindset described in the Mel Hodge article directly below.
Become a Smart Patient and Save Your Own Life - Part 1: Follow the Money
Posting by Mel Hodge from the KidneyViews blog.

Editor's note: This is the kind of financial analysis that should have been done long ago by the patient advocacy groups. These groups have conveniently failed to question the motives of the large junk-credit-rating dialysis corporations for decades. But then, where does much of the funding for these patient advocacy groups come from?

What constitutes most of the efforts of these patient groups? Education. Teaching how to be expert, in-center, barely adequately-dialyzed, compliant patients.
Outcomes Worse in Dialysis Started Without Nephrologist Care
(Registration required, but free.) Berns on Nephrology video blog from Medscape Nephrology.
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  Jan. 8, 2016
We Don't Know Sh*t about IV Fluids
Posting from the Precious Bodily Fluids blog.

"How can a substance that is four times as efficient as another, at least by the metric we think are critical, have no influence on outcome?"

Editor's note: Isn't it also time that we admit that we don't know sh*t about dialysis adequacy? Isn't it time to abandon the Kt/V model? Perhaps this is a much better definition of dialysis treatment adequacy:
"If the treatment of chronic uremia cannot fully rehabilitate the patient, the treatment is inadequate."
This statement should be on a large plaque on the front door of the Kidney Care Partners office in Washington, DC. It should also be the mission statement for every dialysis corporation medical director...and on all musketeer costumes and in all company songs.

We need the three better musketeers: Rehabilitation, Employment and Home Dialysis!
Organ Recipients at Raised Risk of Cancer Death, Study Finds
Article from HealthDay. Online First abstract and press release from JAMA Oncology.
Call for Public Comment on Vascular Access and Access to Transplantation Measures: Overview: The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) has contracted with the University of Michigan Kidney Epidemiology and Cost Center (UM-KECC) for these projects. The Call for Public Comment period opens on January 6, 2016 and closes on February 5, 2016.
Mid-Atlantic Renal Coalition Finds Peer Mentoring Reduces Missed Treatments
Press release.
Four Ways to a Better Patient Healthcare Experience (in patients with chronic conditions)
Article from Managed Healthcare Executive.
ANNA Member Donates Kidney to Patient
News item from the American Nephrology Nurses Association.
Proposed North Carolina Bill Could Make Blue Cross Accept Third-Party Payments for Dialysis
Article and video from WNCN.com.
Nearly All Americans Still Consume Too Much Salt: CDC
Article from HealthDay. Article from the Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report.
Differences in Initial Hemodialysis Vascular Access Use Among Glomerulonephritis Subtypes in the United States
Article in Press abstract from American Journal of Kidney Diseases.
Maternal Compared with Paternal Donor Kidneys Are Associated with Poorer Graft Outcomes after Kidney Transplantation
Free, full-text, In Press article from Kidney International.
Circulating Alpha-Tocopherol and Insulin Sensitivity Among Older Men With Chronic Kidney Disease
Article in Press abstract from Journal of Renal Nutrition.
Early View Abstracts from Hemodialysis International:
Sarcopenia in Patients Undergoing Maintenance Hemodialysis: Incidence Rate, Risk Factors and Its Effect on Survival Risk
Abstract from Renal Failure.
AAKP Announces 2016 Medal of Excellence Winners
Detecting When and Why Deadly Blood Clots Form
New U.S. Dietary Guidelines: Limit Sugar and Salt, Boost Fruit and Veggie Intake
Article from HealthDay. Free, full-text, viewpoint article from the Journal of the American Medical Association. Dietary guidelines from the Department of Health and Human Services.
Why Cancer Screening Has Never Been Shown to "Save Lives"—and What We Can Do about It
Article from The BMJ.
Republicans Send Symbolic Health Law Repeal To Obama
News summary from Kaiser Health News.
2016 Health Law Enrollment Tops 11.3M
CMS Delaying the Release of the Access to Care Study Methodology
News item from Renal Network 11.
No Payment Changes for Nephrologists in Physician Fee Schedule
Article from Nephrology News & Issues.
CROWNWeb 4.9 Released on January 5, 2016
CROWNWeb Training, Jan. 12-13


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Thursday, Jan. 7

Call for Public Comment on Vascular Access and Access to Transplantation Measures: Overview: The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) has contracted with the University of Michigan Kidney Epidemiology and Cost Center (UM-KECC) for these projects. The Call for Public Comment period opens on January 6, 2016 and closes on February 5, 2016.
Mid-Atlantic Renal Coalition Finds Peer Mentoring Reduces Missed Treatments
Press release.
AAKP Announces 2016 Medal of Excellence Winners
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  Jan. 7, 2016
Articles from Nephrology News & Issues: Editor's note: Finally! The first articles about dialysis patient employment in years!

Unfortunately, we have to start from almost nothing. There has been almost no work or research in this field. CMS policies do nothing to encourage patient employment. There is essentially no rehabilitation and/or employment expertise in the two junk-credit-rating, for-profit corporations that dominate U.S. dialysis care. These corporations have no financial incentive to increase patient employment. The patient advocacy groups have never accumulated or prioritized relevant data from patients, nor have they formulated any policy requests that would increase patient employment. The American Society of Nephrology has not advocated patient employment as a treatment goal. The new chair of Kidney Care Partners, Dr. Franklin Maddux, has never mentioned rehabilitation or employment in his four years as Chief Medical Officer at Fresenius Medical Care.

Even patient advocates like Dori Schatell and Peter Laird have written against targeting patient employment as a treatment goal. What they fail to appreciate is that targeting increasing employment rates, year after year, decade after decade, will continually improve dialysis care and technology for all. Failing to target this high-level goal for this important subpopulation has created a system of for-profit care that condemns nearly all patients to enslavement to a life called dialysis.

Yes, we need to get to work, but what can unite the dialysis corporations, CMS, legislators, nephrologists, patient groups, and advocates with their own agendas?

The likely best solution is to extend the Medicare Secondary Payer (MSP) period for employed patients. If more patients stayed employed, dialysis clinic revenues would increase. That would incentivize the corporations and their nephrologists without increasing government spending. Patient needs and concerns would be heard. It would also drive the improvements in dialysis technology that have been sorely needed.

But what will likely happen? Unfortunately, there are tremendous institutional inertias. A committee of stake holders will eventually be formed that will, after one or two years, finally release a statement calling for... additional studies. Who benefits from this outcome? The junk-bond dialysis corporations, all the organizations they support, and the politicians that depend on their campaign contributions.

Many fields of U.S. medicine have successfully harnessed the power of profit incentives for the benefit of patients. Unfortunately, largely because of the Stark Law exemption for nephrologists, U.S. dialysis care is the poster child for the failures of for-profit medicine.
Systematic Review of Programs Treating High-need and High-cost People With Multiple Chronic Diseases or Disabilities in the United States, 2008–2014
(Registration required, but free.) Free, full-text article from Preventing Chronic Disease via Medscape Nephrology.
Safety Concerns about Intravenous Iron Therapy in Patients with Chronic Kidney Disease
Free, full-text, Advance Access article from Clinical Kidney Journal.
Simultaneous Abdominal Wall Defect Repair and Tenckhoff Catheter Placement in Candidates for Peritoneal Dialysis
Free, full-text, First Online article from Journal of Nephrology.
The Cost Effectiveness of High-Dose versus Conventional Haemodialysis: a Systematic Review
First Online abstract from Applied Health Economics and Health Policy.
Articles in Press Abstracts from American Journal Of Kidney Diseases:
Development and Initial Validation of Prescribing Quality Indicators for Patients with Chronic Kidney Disease
Advance Access Abstract from NDT.
Articles in Press Abstracts from Journal of Vascular Surgery:
First Onliine Abstracts from Journal of Nephrology:
Targeted Drug Shows Promise Against Advanced Kidney Cancer
Survey: One in Four Working Age Adults Report Problems Paying Medical Bills
News brief from AHANewsNow.
Hard Lessons Learned From the Ebola Fight
Article from HealthDay.
 


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Wednesday, Jan. 6

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  Jan. 6, 2016
Racial Disparities in Kidney Transplantation Rates Eased by New Allocation System
Press release from Johns Hopkins Medicine.
Feds Funding Effort To Tie Medical Services To Social Needs
Article from Kaiser Health News. News release from the Department of Health and Human Services. News brief from AHANewsNow.
Free, Full-Text, Open Access Articles from PLOS ONE:
Dysnatremia, Its Correction, and Mortality in Patients Undergoing Continuous Renal Replacement Therapy: a Prospective Observational Study
Free, full-text, Open Access article from BMC Nephrology.
Diet and Exercise Benefit People With Heart Failure
Article from HealthDay. Press release and free, full-text article from the Journal of the American Medical Association.
Articles in Press Abstracts from Journal of Renal Nutrition:
The Trouble with For-Profit Healthcare: Even the Insured Face Mountains of Debt
Article from Common Dreams.
Premium-based Financial Incentives Did Not Motivate Obese Employees to Lose Weight
Press release from the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine.
ESRD QIP: Payment Year 2019 Final Rule Call on Jan. 19, 2 - 3:30 PM ET — Register Now
Link to MLN Connects event registration. Final rule from the Federal Register. ESRD QIP web site.


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Tuesday, Jan. 5

Racial Disparities in Kidney Transplantation Rates Eased by New Allocation System
Press release from Johns Hopkins Medicine.
ESRD QIP: Payment Year 2019 Final Rule Call on Jan. 19, 2 - 3:30 PM ET — Register Now
Link to MLN Connects event registration. Final rule from the Federal Register. ESRD QIP web site.
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  Jan. 5, 2016
Dr. Franklin Maddux, Chief Medical Officer of Fresenius Medical Care North America, Takes Helm As New Chair of Kidney Care Partners
Press release.

Editor's note: Over the last four years, Dr. Maddux has yet to mention the words 'rehabilitation' or 'employment' in any press statement concerning dialysis patients. His tenure ensures that patients' voices will continue to be minimized and that the stagnant dialysis technology that has served Fresenius Medical Care stockholders so well will also continue. For U.S. dialysis patients, this means two more years of junk-bond nephrology lobbying on their behalf in Washington, DC by Kidney Care Partners.
Nephrology Apocalypse
Posting from the Precious Bodily Fluids blog.
It's Official: DSI Renal Has New Owners
Posting from the Nashville Business Journal blog.
Diagnosis and Management of Iron Deficiency in CKD: A Summary of the NICE Guideline Recommendations and Their Rationale
Article in Press abstract from American Journal of Kidney Diseases.
CJASN Express Abstracts:
Clinical Characteristics of Patients with Hemodialysis Associated Pneumonia Compared to Patients with Non-Hemodialysis Community Onset Pneumonia
Article in Press abstract from Respiratory Medicine.
The Gut Microbiome & CKD
Posting from the AJKD blog.
  Early Initiation of Renal Replacement Therapy in Pediatric Heart Surgery Is Associated with Lower Mortality
First Online abstract from Pediatric Cardiology.
Case Report: Acute Bowel Obstruction with an Isolated Transition Point in Peritoneal Dialysis Patients; a Presentation of Encapsulating Peritoneal Sclerosis?
Free, full-text, Open Access article from BMC Nephrology.
Renal Function Trajectory over Time and Adverse Clinical Outcomes
First Online abstract from Clinical and Experimental Nephrology.
Abstracts from Renal Failure:
Pioneering Artificial Pancreas to Undergo Final Tests
News release from University of Virginia Health System.
Doctor-Patient Emails Can Help the Chronically ill
Newer Blood Pressure Drugs as Good as Older Ones: Study
Higher Monthly Doses of Vitamin D Associated with Increased Risk of Falls
Study Identifies Medical Specialties Receiving Highest Payments from Manufacturers
Press release from UCSD.
Improving Adherence to Therapy and Clinical Outcomes While Containing Costs: Opportunities From the Greater Use of Generic Medications: Best Practice Advice From the Clinical Guidelines Committee of the American College of Physicians
Free, full-text clinical guidelines and Summary for Patients from Annals of Internal Medicine.
Do You Speak Health Insurance? It's Not Easy
Article from Minnesota Public Radio via Kaiser Health News.
Families Like Looser ICU Visitation Policies
New Medicare Rule Targets Medical Equipment
Article from HealthDay. News brief from AHANewsNow.


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Monday, Jan. 4

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  Jan. 4, 2016
Will Lab-Grown Kidneys Fix Our Transplant Waiting Lists?
Article from The Washington Post.
Nocturnal Hemodialysis in a(n Australian) 'Caravan' ('RV' in American)
Posting from the KidneyViews blog.
Prolonged Warm Ischemia Time Is Associated with Graft Failure and Mortality after Kidney Transplantation
Free, full-text, Article in Press from Kidney International.
Iron Management in Chronic Kidney Disease: Conclusions from a "Kidney Disease: Improving Global Outcomes" (KDIGO) Controversies Conference
Free, full-text, Open Access meeting report from Kidney International.
First Online Abstracts from International Urology And Nephrology:
Familial Factors, Low Birth Weight, and Development of ESRD: A Nationwide Registry Study
Article in Press abstract from American Journal of Kidney Diseases.
Theoretical Basis for and Improvement of Daugirdas' Second Generation Formula for Single Pool Kt/V
Advance Online abstract from the International Journal of Artificial Organs.
Diabetes a Big Risk Factor for Surgical Site Infections
(Registration required, but free.) Article from Medscape Medical News.
Why It's Such a Big Deal That Mainstream Glucometers are Going Wireless
Article from MedGadget.
Families of Critically Ill Patients Need Extra Support, Too
 


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Thurs. - Sat., Dec. 31 - Jan. 2

Will Lab-Grown Kidneys Fix Our Transplant Waiting Lists?
Article from The Washington Post.
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  Dec. 31, 2015
Heart-Healthy Nutrition Approach for Chronic Kidney Disease Patients
Free, full-text article from Journal of Renal Nutrition.
Free, Full-Text Articles from PLOS ONE:
Therapeutic Hypothermia in Deceased Organ Donors and Kidney-Graft Function
Correspondence from the New England Journal of Medicine.
Hospitals' Brain Death Policies Vary Dramatically, Study Finds
Article from HealthDay.
Sofosbuvir and Velpatasvir for HCV Genotype 1, 2, 4, 5, and 6 Infection
Free, full-text article from the New England Journal of Medicine.
Heart Failure Mortality Taking a Turn for the Worse
(Registration required, but free.) Article from MedPage Today.
Free, Full-Text, Perspective Pieces from the New England Journal of Medicine:
Medicare Program; End-Stage Renal Disease Prospective Payment System, and Quality Incentive Program; Correction
Notice from the Federal Register.
Improving the Submission of Quality Data to CMS Quality Reporting Programs
Posting from the CMS Blog.


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Wednesday, Dec. 30

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  Dec. 30, 2015
Nurse's Characterization Doesn't Represent Most Dialysis Patients
Viewpoint article from Nephrology News & Issues.

"Health care professionals today define the value of the services they provide in patient centered terms, not clinician centered terms. It is linked to understanding the patient experience and the individual patient values in play. This means listening to patients and collaborating with them rather than demanding conformity to the professionals' personal concept of the ideal patient."

Editor's note: CMS policies and payment schemes have brought out the worst in many nephrologists, nurses and corporations, both medically and morally. A long-term strategy for improving dialysis care that includes patient re/habilitation was abandoned forty years ago and U.S. dialysis care has been stagnant ever since. Making things worse, patient advocacy groups have not embraced any measure of 'quality' care that drives continual improvements in technology and in patients' lives.

It is a disgrace that attainment of CMS's rating of top 'quality' in dialysis care is likely the result of manipulation of the reporting system. The current system richly rewards mid-level managers in junk-credit-rating corporations that are willing to 'game' the system in all possible ways on all possible levels. (Why was DaVita — with its unremarkable USRDS mortality and hospitalization data — completely surprised by its top 5-star rating results? Shouldn't this raise red flags, especially in a company that has paid the government nearly $1B in recent years to settle questionable business practices?)
Amgen's Nephrology Drugs Expect Falling Revenue in 4Q15
Article from Yahoo.
Our Body Parts Shouldn't Be for Sale
Opinion piece from The Washington Post.
Reducing Salt Intake Might Harm Heart Failure Patients, Study Claims
Article from HealthDay.
The Effects of Vitamin K Supplementation and Vitamin K Antagonists on Progression of Vascular Calcification: Ongoing Randomized Controlled Trials
Free, full-text, Advance Access article from Clinical Kidney Journal.
The Role of Natriuretic Peptides in Volume Assessment and Mortality Prediction in Hemodialysis Patients
Free, full-text, Open Access article from BMC Nephrology.
The Brain in Kidney Disease (BRINK) Cohort Study: Design and Baseline Cognitive Function
Article in Press abstract from American Journal of Kidney Diseases.
Effect of Taurine on Hemodiafiltration in Patients With Chronic Heart Failure
Early View abstract from Therapeutic Apheresis and Dialysis.
Diabetic Kidney Damage May Start Earlier Than Thought
Article from HealthDay.
 
Synchronizing Medicare Advantage And ACOs To Support The Secretary's Quality And Value Payment Goals
Posting from the Health Affairs blog.


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Tuesday, Dec. 29

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  Dec. 29, 2015
CJASN Express Abstracts:
Effects of an Intradialytic Resistance Training Program on Physical Function: a Prospective Stepped-Wedge Randomized Controlled Trial
Advance Access abstract from NDT.
New Way to Predict Risks of Donating a Kidney
(Registration required, but free.) Commentary from Medscape Nephrology.
What Should the Characteristics and Attributes of an Accredited Nephrology Training Program Be? Looking for High Standards
Free, full-text, Advance Access article from Clinical Kidney Journal.
Scientists Prevent, Reverse Diabetes Related Kidney Destruction in Animal Model
Press release from Medical College of Georgia.
Generosity Won't Fix Our Shortage of Organs for Transplants
Prediabetes a Precursor to Kidney Disease
  New Rules for Mammograms, Tanning Beds Top Health News of 2015
Article from HealthDay.
RPA Comments on 2016 Medicare Fee Schedule Final Rule
Letter from the Renal Physicians Association.
CMS Plans Expansion of Recovery Audit Program for Medicare Advantage
27-page pdf. Article from Modern Healthcare (registration required).


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Monday, Dec. 28

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  Dec. 28, 2015
Dialysis Company DaVita Leads List of Companies Caught for Committing Fraud against U.S. Government
Article from AllGov.com.
Top Nephrology-Related Stories of 2015
Posting from the Renal Fellow Network blog.
Developing Life Skills in Hemodialysis Using the Guided Self-Determination Method: a Qualitative Study
Early View abstract from Journal of Renal Care.
Articles in Press Abstracts from American Journal of Kidney Diseases:
Hyperkalemia Drugs: Questions Remain
(Registration required, but free.) Berns on Nephrology video blog from Medscape Nephrology.
Changes in Intracellular Water Following Hemodialysis Treatment Lead to Changes in Estimates of Lean Tissue Using Bioimpedance Spectroscopy
OnlineFirst abstract from Nutrition and Clinical Practice.
Predictive Factors Associated with Increased Progression to Dialysis in Early Chronic Kidney Disease (Stage 1-3) Patients
First Online abstract from Clinical and Experimental Nephrology.
Effect of Hemodialysis on Intraocular Lens Power Calculation
Abstract from Renal Failure.
5 Game-Changers in Cardiology in 2015
All High-Risk Patients Should Get Blood Pressure Meds: Study
U.S. Health Care Is Failing My Patients
Article from The Daily Beast.
ObamaCare's Hold Growing Stronger
Article from The Hill.
Pilot Programs To Improve Care For Elderly Or Disabled Poor Patients Stumble


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Thursday-Saturday, Dec. 24-26

Dialysis Company DaVita Leads List of Companies Caught for Committing Fraud against U.S. Government
Article from AllGov.com.
Articles in Press Abstracts from American Journal of Kidney Diseases:
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  Dec. 24, 2015
CKD Prevalence Varies across the European General Population
Free, full-text, JASN Express article.
Fibroblast Growth Factor 23 and Vascular Calcification: Is It Set in Stone?
Free, full-text, Issue in Progress editorial and related abstract from American Journal of Nephrology.
Kidney Injury Common Following Vascular Surgery
Press release and free, full-text, Online First article from JAMA Surgery.
Modulation of Stroke Risk in Chronic Kidney Disease
Free, full-text, Advance Access article from Clinical Kidney Journal.
Reduction of Dialysate Calcium Level Reduces Progression of Coronary Artery Calcification and Improves Low Bone Turnover in Patients on Hemodialysis
JASN Express abstract.
Chronic Kidney Disease of Uncertain Etiology: Adding Vital Piece of Information to the National Project Team Report of Sri Lanka
Full-text correspondence from BMC Nephrology.
Blood Pressure Drugs Rethink Urged
Fresenius Medical Care Has No Women on Corporate Supervisory Board
Comfort Care for Patients Dying in the Hospital
Free, full-text, review article from the New England Journal of Medicine.
 


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Wednesday, Dec. 23

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  Dec. 23, 2015
US Haemodiafiltration, Where Art Thou?
Posting from the KidneyViews blog.

"Everywhere one looks within the US dialysis-sphere, treatment is too short, too fast, too brutal, too facility-based, too system-oriented, too profit-focused, too suffering-ignorant, too patient-disrespective."

Editor's note: European and Japanese nephrologists are usually shocked to learn that the people performing the chronic dialysis treatments in the U.S. are almost solely technicians with high school diplomas. The U.S. business model depends on cheap labor. Hemodiafiltration is a more complex procedure than hemodialysis and may fall within the domain of licensed nursing personnel.
Fluid Volume Expansion and Depletion in Hemodialysis Patients Lack Association with Clinical Parameters
Free, full-text, Open Access article from Canadian Journal of Kidney Health and Disease.
ESRD NCC and KPAC Release “Patients Speak”
6-minute audio/video from the End Stage Renal Disease National Coordinating Center and the Kidney Patient Advisory Council.
Articles in Press Abstracts from American Journal Of Kidney Diseases:
Novel Once-Daily Extended-Release Tacrolimus Versus Twice-Daily Tacrolimus in De Novo Kidney Transplant Recipients: Two-Year Results of Phase 3, Double-Blind, Randomized Trial
Free, full-text, Open Access Article in Press from American Journal of Kidney Diseases.
ACE Inhibitors of Little Benefit to Kidney Transplant Patients
Clinical Trials Update extract from the Journal of the American Medical Association.
Effect of Physician Participation in a Multi-element Health Information and Data Exchange Program on Chronic Illness Medication Adherence
(Registration required, but free.) Free full-text article from Journal of the American Board of Family Practice via Medscape Nephrology.
Apparent Migration of Implantable Port Devices: Normal Variations in Consideration of BMI
Advance Online abstract from the Journal of Vascular Access.
FDA Press Releases:
Chronic Kidney Disease Prevalence Varies Greatly across Europe
Press release from the American Society of Nephrology.
Health Officials Call for Better Enforcement on Clinical Trial Reporting
Article from STAT.
CMS Shares Highest $$$ Medicare Drugs of 2014
(Registration required, but free.) Article from MedPage Today. Posting from The CMS Blog. Medicare Drug Spending Dashboard and Fact Sheet. Article from The Hill.


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Tuesday, Dec. 22

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  Dec. 22, 2015
Study Finds That More Than One Third of Patients with Metastatic Cancer Continue to Work
Press release and Early View abstract from CANCER.

Editor's note: Here is a great example of how important work is to Americans, even when they have metastatic cancer. Far more people with metastatic cancer keep working than dialysis patients.

It is a tragedy that U.S. policymakers and dialysis patient advocacy organizations never targeted employment as a marker of excellence in dialysis care. Instead, they accepted biochemical marker targets, which led to four decades of stagnation in technological progress and a worsening of the quality of patients' lives.

Targeting employment rates would have led to four decades of continual progress in meeting patients' medical needs, psychosocial needs, quality of life needs, technological needs, medical infrastructure needs, and financial needs.
Variability in Monthly Serum Bicarbonate Measures in Hemodialysis Patients: a Cohort Study
Free, full-text, Open Access article from BMC Nephrology.
Sudden Cardiac Arrest May Not Be So Sudden
Article from HealthDay. Press release from Cedars-Sinai Medical Center. Online First abstract and full-text Summary for Patients from Annals of Internal Medicine.
First Online Abstract from Pediatric Nephrology:
Treatment of Secondary Hyperparathyroidism: Results of a Phase 2 Trial Evaluating an Intravenous Peptide Agonist of the Calcium-Sensing Receptor
Issue in Progress abstract from American Journal of Nephrology.
Assessing Value-based Health Care Delivery for Hemodialysis
Early View abstract from Journal of Evaluation in Clinical Practice.
How Chronic Inflammation Can Change the Fate of Cells
News release from Ecole Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne.
FDA Lifts 30-Year Ban on Blood Donations by Gay Men
Article from HealthDay. FDA news release.
Vanderbilt Study Finds Hypertension Related Visits to Emergency Rooms on Rise in US
Harmful Algal Blooms and Water Quality
President Signs Omnibus Including 'Cadillac' and Medical Device Tax Delays
News summary from Healthcare DIVE. News summary from Kaiser Health News.
Bacteria That Resist 'Last Antibiotic' Found in UK
Article from the BBC.
Delayed Antibiotic Prescribing Strategies—Time to Implement?
Free, full-text, Online First article from JAMA Internal Medicine.
Nurses Rank as Most Honest, Ethical Profession for 14th Straight Year
Senate Finance Committee Seeks Comments on Chronic Care Policy Options
News brief from AHANewsNow. Options paper is a (30-page pdf).
Hospitals In 15 States To Pay $28M To Settle Medicare Fraud Case
News summary from Kaiser Health News.


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Monday, Dec. 21

Study Finds That More Than One Third of Patients with Metastatic Cancer Continue to Work
Press release and Early View abstract from CANCER.

Editor's note: Here is a great example of how important work is to Americans, even when they have metastatic cancer. Far more people with metastatic cancer keep working than dialysis patients.

It is a tragedy that U.S. policymakers and dialysis patient advocacy organizations never targeted employment as a marker of excellence in dialysis care. Instead, they accepted biochemical marker targets, which led to four decades of stagnation in technological progress and a worsening of the quality of patients' lives.

Targeting employment rates would have led to four decades of continual progress in meeting patients' medical needs, psychosocial needs, quality of life needs, technological needs, medical infrastructure needs, and financial needs.
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  Dec. 21, 2015
50th Recipient in UAB Kidney Chain Shares His Personal Journey to Transplant
Press release from the University of Alabama at Birmingham.
New Rules Getting Kidneys to Hard to Match Patients
AP article via The Denver Post.
Articles in Press Abstracts from American Journal Of Kidney Diseases:
Free, Full-Text, Advance Access Articles from Clinical Kidney Journal:
Abstracts from Therapeutic Apheresis and Dialysis:
Exploring Potential Reasons for the Temporal Trend in Dialysis-Requiring AKI in the United States
CJASN Express abstract.
Free, Full-Text Articles from Advances in Chronic Kidney Disease:
Physical Activity and Screen Time in Adolescents in the Chronic Kidney Disease in Children (CKiD) Cohort
First Online abstract from Pediatric Nephrology.
Balloon Dilatation for Removal of an Irretrievable Permanent Hemodialysis Catheter: The Safest Approach
Early View abstract from Artificial Organs.
Baxter Initiates Voluntary Recall of Two Lots of IV Solutions Due to Potential Presence of Particulate Matter
Press release.
Drug Overdoses Hit Record High: CDC
Article from HealthDay.
Minorities Less Likely to Trust Physicians, Penn Research Reveals
Press release from the University of Pennsylvania.
 


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Fri./Sat., Dec. 18-19

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  Dec. 18, 2015
Nutritional Vitamin D Supplements Do Not Help Treat Anemia in Dialysis Patients
Press release and JASN Express abstract from the American Society of Nephrology.
UCSF Voluntarily Suspends Kidney Donor Transplant Program after Death
Article from KTVU.com.
Free, Full-Text Articles from American Journal Of Kidney Diseases:

Intradialytic Parenteral Nutrition in Maintenance Hemodialysis Patients Suffering from Protein Energy Wasting. Results of a Multicenter, Open, Prospective, Randomized Trial
Free, full-text, Open Access Article in Press from Clinical Nutrition.
Donor Smoking and Recipient Outcomes in Kidney Transplantation
Posting from the Renal Fellow Network blog.
Early Changes in Kidney Distribution under the New Allocation System
JASN Express abstract.
CJASN Express Abstracts:
Low Parathyroid Hormone Levels after Parathyroidectomy Reduce Cardiovascular Mortality in Chronic Hemodialysis Patients
First Online abstract from Clinical and Experimental Nephrology.
Primary Care Physicians' Perceived Barriers, Facilitators and Strategies to Enhance Conservative Care for Older Adults with Chronic Kidney Disease: a Qualitative Descriptive Study
Advance Access abstract from NDT.
Effects of Cardiovascular Events on End-Stage Renal Disease and Mortality in Patients With Chronic Kidney Disease Before Dialysis
Early View abstract from Therapeutic Apheresis and Dialysis.
Dietary Cocoa Flavanols Improve Blood Vessel Function in Patients with Kidney Dysfunction
Press release and CJASN Express abstract from the American Society of Nephrology.
More U.S. Kids Have Type 1 Diabetes, But Researchers Don't Know Why
Article from HealthDay.
Smoking Bans Beat Cigarette Taxes to Help Smokers Quit: Study
CMS Program Transmittals:
Medicare's New Bundled Payments — Design, Strategy, and Evolution
Free, full-text, Online First viewpoint article from the Journal of the American Medical Association.


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Thursday, Dec. 17

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  Dec. 17, 2015
Blood Vessel Discovery a Major Step toward Growing Kidneys
Press release from the University of Virginia Health System.
How To Increase Home Dialysis Use
Article by Mark Neumann from Nephrology News & Issues.

Editor's note: Isn't this GAO report just more evidence that U.S. nephrologists are far more likely to serve their own financial interests than to work to deliver optimal care to dialysis patients?

U.S. nephrologists have become so accustomed to putting their own financial interests first that it has become a cultural norm. Instead of publishing editorials and letters in the American Society of Nephrology (ASN) journals decrying how few patients are employed, rehabilitated, or dialyze at home, U.S. nephrologists instead accept medical director and employment contracts from junk-bond, for-profit dialysis corporations that push patients into treatments that the nephrologists would never accept for themselves.

Until U.S. nephrologists extricate themselves from the profit schemes of junk-bond dialysis corporations, U.S. dialysis patients will continue to receive shamefully inadequate and shortsighted care.

Mark Neumann should demonstrate more of the moral urgency that Mel Hodge does. U.S. nephrologists are perpetuating immoral medicine. Perhaps it is time to rename the ASN to the more appropriate 'American Society of Junk-Bond Nephrology.'
Comparison of Two Parathyroid Hormone Assays in Hemodialysis Patients
Early View abstract from Artificial Organs.
Serum Parathyroid Hormone Concentrations and Clinical Outcomes in ESRD: A Call for Targeted Clinical Trials
Early View abstract from Seminars in Dialysis.
Use of Calcium Channel Blockers is Associated with Mortality in Patients with Chronic Kidney Disease
Free, full-text, Issue-in-Progress article from Kidney & Blood Pressure Research.
CKD and Health-Related Quality of Life: The Korea National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey
Article in Press abstract from American Journal of Kidney Diseases.
Link between Anemia and Mild Cognitive Impairment
Heart Disease Now Kills 1 of Every 3 Americans
Article from HealthDay.
NIH Unveils FY2016-2020 Strategic Plan
News release from the National Institutes of Health.
Mobile Device and Health Information Privacy and Security
HIPAA-related resources from HealthIT.gov.
FDA Approves Basaglar, the First "Follow-On" Insulin Glargine Product to Treat Diabetes
FDA news release.
Rosiglitazone-Containing Diabetes Medicines: Drug Safety Communication - FDA Eliminates the Risk Evaluation and Mitigation Strategy (REMS)
Congressional Bill Could Extend Thousands of Nursing Careers by Preventing Injuries
 


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Wednesday, Dec. 16

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  Dec. 16, 2015
Fresenius Medical Care Nurses in Metro NYC To Pass Out Leaflets at Dialysis Company Clinic Sites Protesting Health Plan Changes
News release from the New York State Nurses Association.

"Fresenius needs to step up and do the right thing," said Teresa Schloth, RN, a Fresenius nurse.  "We work hard to deliver quality care to our patients.  These proposed cuts to our benefits are an insult to us, our patients and the community we serve."

"We are taking a stand against corporate greed," said Kelvin Peña, equipment technician at Nephrocare Inc., a Fresenius holding. "Fresenius wants to squeeze profits out of its employees by switching us to a more expensive health plan with inferior coverage. Fresenius is a multi-billion dollar global company with more than enough resources to make sure its staff has the coverage to remain healthy. We can't allow companies like Fresenius to short-change workers locally to make profits globally."

Paying Through the Nose to Keep a Kidney
Press release from the National Kidney Foundation.
Shingles Vaccine Helps Protect Older Patients with End-Stage Renal Disease
Press release from Kaiser Permanente.
Dialysis Modality Choice in Elderly Patients with End-Stage Renal Disease: a Narrative Review of the Available Evidence
Advance Access abstract from NDT.
FirstView Abstracts from Infection Control and Hospital Epidemiology:
Are Nutritional Composed Scoring Systems and Protein-Energy Wasting Score Associated With Mortality in Maintenance Hemodialysis Patients?
Article in Press abstract from Journal of Renal Nutrition.
Article in Press Abstracts from Blood Purification:
Detection of Left Atrium Myopathy Using Two-Dimensional Speckle Tracking Echocardiography in Patients with End-Stage Renal Disease on Dialysis Therapy
Early View abstract from Endocardiography.
Abstracts from Renal Failure:
NephroGenex Announces FDA Clearance of IND Application for Clinical Study of Intravenous Pyridorin in the Treatment of Acute Kidney Injury
US Research Bodies Aren't Reporting Trial Results As Required
Article from STAT.
Diversity in Medical Research Is a Long Way Off, Study Shows
Press release from UCSF.
Majority of U.S. Hospitals Don't Require Flu Shots for Staffers: Survey
Article from HealthDay.
 


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Tuesday, Dec. 15

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  Dec. 15, 2015
Don Berwick Offers Health Care 9 Steps to End Era of 'Complex Incentives' and 'Excessive Measurement'
Article from Hospitals & Health Networks.

Editor's note: I would say that U.S. dialysis care is getting 8 out of the 9 items on this list wrong.
CJASN Express Abstracts:
Benefits of a Transfer Clinic in Adolescent and Young Adult Kidney Transplant Patients
Free, full-text, Open Access article from BMC Nephrology.
Online First Abstracts from Pediatric Nephrology:
The Effects of Aromatherapy with Lavender Essential Oil on Fatigue Levels in Hemodialysis Patients: a Randomized Clinical Trial
Article in Press abstract from Complementary Therapies in Clinical Practice.
Advancing Research on Polycystic Kidney Disease
Press release from the American Society for Cell Biology.
CDC Issues Draft Opioid Prescribing Guidelines for Outpatient Settings
News brief from AHANewsNow.
How Hospitals Can Partner with, Engage Patients and Families to Improve Care
Article from Hospitals & Health Networks.
MedPAC Meeting Presentation on Outpatient Dialysis Payment Adequacy
(16-page pdf) Powerpoint presentation to the Medicare Payment Advisory Commission on December 10. The transcript of the meeting is a 352-page pdf (the dialysis-related portion begins on page 228).

Editor's note: Another year with no mention of the fact that more than forty years after this program began, the employment and rehabilitation rates for these patients are dismal and are indicative of system failure.

Another year of junk-bond dialysis in America headed by corporate management that will not use the words "employment" or "rehabilitation."

What was the intent of the 1972 legislation?


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Monday, Dec. 14

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  Dec. 14, 2015
Free, Full-Text, Advance Access Articles from Clnical Kidney Journal:
Different Impact of Hemodialysis Vintage on Cause Specific Mortality in Long-Term Hemodialysis Patients
Advance Access abstract from NDT.
Early View Abstracts from Hemodialysis International:
Additional Benefit of Dietitian Involvement in Dialysis Staffs Led Diet Education on Uncontrolled Hyperphosphatemia in Hemodialysis Patients
First Online abstract from Clinical and Experimental Nephrology.
Acute Kidney Injury Recovery Pattern and Subsequent Risk of CKD: An Analysis of Veterans Health Administration Data
Article in Press abstract from American Journal of Kidney Diseases.
More Attention Needed to Results of Simple Test of Kidney Function
Press release from Johns Hopkins University Bloomberg School of Public Health. JASN Express abstracts:
Plant Protein Reduces Mortality in Chronic Kidney Disease Patients
Press release from the National Kidney Foundation. Article in Press abstract from American Journal of Kidney Diseases.
Free, Full-Text Articles from Current Opinion in Nephrology and Hypertension:
FDA Drug Safety Labeling Changes for November 2015
Includes 19 products with revisions to Prescribing Information including Rapamune.
Fresenius Medical Care Closes Acute Dialysis Program in Oregon Community
Why Are Healthcare Affordability Problems Declining?
Article from HFMA.
CMS Penalizes 758 Hospitals under Hospital-Acquired Condition (HAC) Reduction Program
Article from Kaiser Health News.


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Fri./Sat., Dec. 11-12

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  Dec. 11, 2015
Racial Disparities Exist in Access to Home Dialysis among U.S. Patients with Kidney Failure
Press release and JASN Express abstract from the American Society of Nephrology. Article from MedPage Today (registration required).
Hemodialysis Access in the Elderly: Outcomes among Patients Older than Seventy
Article in Press abstract from Annals of Vascular Surgery.
KDIGO To Assess the Impact of the SPRINT Trial on its 2012 Blood Pressure Guideline
(2-page pdf) News release from Kidney Disease | Improving Global Outcomes.
AKI Biomarkers in Nicaraguan Sugarcane Workers
Posting from the AJKD blog.
Improved Long-Term Survival and Renal Recovery after Acute Kidney Injury in Hospitalized Patients, a 20 Years Experience
Accepted Article abstract from Nephrology.
Predictors of Incident ESRD among Patients with Primary Hyperoxaluria Presenting Prior to Kidney Failure
CJASN Express abstract.
The Associations of Plant Protein Intake With All-Cause Mortality in CKD
Article in Press abstract from American Journal of Kidney Diseases.

The SONG-HD Initiative
Posting by David Rosenbloom on the KidneyViews blog.

Editor's note: It is exciting to finally see work like this in the dialysis field. It is a great step forward.

I do worry that the patient responses will be "averaged" so that the final results reflect the priorities of an average-age patient. What's important to a 25-year old is very different from what is important to a 65-year old. I believe one of the most glaring long-term mistakes of dialysis care is that we have not worked to address the psychosocial needs of patient subpopulations.

Diabetes a 'Game Changer' for CV Risk in Women
US Death Rate down 16.6% since 2000; Infant Mortality at Record Low
News brief from AHANewsNow.
bullet point Making Physical Activity Counseling a Priority in Clinical Practice — The Time for Action Is Now
Free, full-text, Online First viewpoint article from the Journal of the American Medical Association.
CMS Expands Quality Data on Physician Compare and Hospital Compare to Help Consumers Choose Health Care Providers
CMS press release.


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Thursday, Dec. 10

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  Dec. 10, 2015

The SONG-HD Initiative
Posting by David Rosenbloom on the KidneyViews blog.

Editor's note: It is exciting to finally see work like this in the dialysis field. It is a great step forward.

I do worry that the patient responses will be "averaged" so that the final results reflect the priorities of an average-age patient. What's important to a 25-year old is very different from what is important to a 65-year old. I believe one of the most glaring long-term mistakes of dialysis care is that we have not worked to address the psychosocial needs of patient subpopulations.

Free, Full-Text Articles from Kidney International:
Free, Full-Text, Open Access Articles from BMC Nephrology:
Free, Full-Text, Open Access Articles from PLOS ONE:
New Fistula First Catheter Last (FFCL) Tools for Access Planning and Monitoring
Announcement from the ESRD National Coordinating Center.
Transcranial Direct Current Stimulation as a Treatment for Depression in the Renal Hemodialysis Setting
Article in Press abstract from Psychosomatics.
More Support for Lower Blood Pressure Goals
Common Heart Failure Drugs May Harm More Than Help
Mass. Gen. Study Examines How Patient's Unmet Needs Impact Their Health and Health Care
Press release from Massachusetts General Hospital. Online First abstract from BMJ Quality & Safety.
bullet point Happiness and Unhappiness Have No Direct Effect on Mortality
Press release and free Open Access article from The Lancet.
bullet point Resident Depression — The Tip of a Graduate Medical Education Iceberg
Free, full-text editorial and related abstract from the Journal of the American Medical Association.
 


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Wednesday, Dec. 9

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  Dec. 9, 2015

Top Nephrology '15 Contender: Treating Hepatitis C Infection in CKD: Results of the Surfer-C Study
Posting from the Renal Fellow Network blog.

National Quality Forum Endorses New Performance Measures for Dialysis Care
Press release.

Editor's note:
This is a hyped-up press release from Kidney Care Partners. As of this morning, the National Quality Forum had not yet posted a press release on their web site.

This is still a long way from the kind of dialysis care that nephrologists would choose for themselves.

Free, Full-Text, Open Access Articles from Nephron Extra:
Effect of a Rapid Clinical Protocol to the Conversion from Central Venous Hemodialysis Catheter to Arteriovenous Access
Advance Online abstract from the Journal of Vascular Access.
A Randomized Study Comparing Parathyroidectomy with Cinacalcet for Treating Hypercalcemia in Kidney Allograft Recipients with Hyperparathyroidism
JASN Express abstract.
Distribution Volume Assessment Compartment Modeling: Theoretic Phosphate Kinetics in Steady State Hemodialys Patients
Advance Online abstract from the International Journal of Artificial Organs.
Successful Use of Minimal Incision Superficialization Technique for Arteriovenous Fistula Maturation
Article in Press abstract from Journal of Vascular Surgery.
Newer Anticoagulants Safer for CKD Patients
Summary from Renal & Urology News.
Blood Thinner, Certain Diabetes Drugs Are a Bad Combo
People with Type 2 Diabetes May Be Overtested
bullet point Telemedicine Effective for Patients, Helps Providers Establish Important Relationships
Press release from University of Missouri-Columbia.
bullet point E-Cigarettes Contain Dangerous 'Popcorn Lung' Chemicals
QIP NHSN Q3 Deadline 12/31


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Tuesday, Dec. 8

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  Dec. 8, 2015
Contamination of Health Care Personnel During Removal of Personal Protective Equipment
Abstract from JAMA Internal Medicine.
FDA Device Recall Notices from the Enforcement Report for Dec. 2, 2015:

Quality Over Quantity: Cholesterol Confounding in Chronic Kidney Conditions
Posting from the AJKD blog.
Serum Phosphate and Social Deprivation Independently Predict All Cause Mortality in Chronic Kidney Disease
Free, full-text, Open Access article from BMC Nephrology.
Chronic Kidney Disease Patients Benefit from Pacing Left and Right Ventricles
Press release and abstract from the Journal of the American College of Cardiology.
Lifetime Insurance Benefit for Living Donors: Is It Necessary and Could It Be Coercive?
Free, full-text, Early View editorial and related abstract from American Journal of Transplantation.
The Importance of Overhydration in Determining Peritoneal Dialysis Technique Failure and Patient Survival in Anuric Patients
Advance Online abstract from the International Journal of Artificial Organs.
Advance Online Abstracts from the Journal of Vascular Access:
Natural History of Common Autologous Arteriovenous Fistulae: Consequences for Planning of Dialysis Access
Article in Press abstract from European Journal of Vascular et Endovascular Surgery.
Poor Kidney Function Prior to Heart Surgery Linked with Longer Hospital Stay, Higher Costs
Press release and Article in Press abstract from the Annals of Thoracic Surgery.
Thyroid Dysfunction and Dyslipidemia in Chronic Kidney Disease Patients
Free, full-text, Open Access article from BMC Endocrine Disorders.
Southern California Man Gets 9 Years in Prison for Dialysis Patient Transport Scam
bullet point Research in Medical Education and Patient-Centered Outcomes — Shall Ever the Twain Meet?
Free, full-text, Online First editorial from JAMA Internal Medicine.
bullet point Dramatic Drug Cost Hikes To Be Subject Of Wednesday Senate Hearing
News summary from Kaiser Health News.
 


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Monday, Dec. 7

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  Dec. 7, 2015
The Profitability (or Not) of Harming Patients
Article from Forbes.

Editor's note: Short treatments, little technological progress, and dismal employment and rehabilitation rates all add to the profits of the two junk-credit-rating corporations that dominate U.S. dialysis care. Fresenius Medical Care (link opens new browser window) has a Morningside rating of BB+, while DaVita Healthcare Partners' (link opens new window) rating is BB.

CMS reimbursement policies have led to junk-bond companies dominating the industry. These corporations use employment contracts to control the nephrologists who then control the quality of most U.S. dialysis patients' lives. These nephrologists routinely shepherd patients into treatment modalities and a quality of care that they would never accept for themselves or their own family members.
The Land of Longer & More Frequent Dialysis
Posting from the KidneyViews blog. See similar postings from RenalWEB:

MY CLINIC PLAN for Engaging Patients
42-page pdf from the Heartland Kidney Network.

Editor's note: This is a typical ESRD Network project in that it is almost completely detached from the reality of improving patients' lives. To begin with, In terms of defining patient engagement, this document takes an awful turn. It states:

"Patient engagement is patients taking an active part in their own health care."

It completely excludes patient feedback into the system of care. It does not require dialysis corporations to listen and address patients' psychosocial needs. It does not ask patients the question, "What is important to you?" For-profit corporations give patients little or no input in formulating their care and this document only supports that approach.

Using the analogy from the previous news item, this organization's definition of patient engagement is for patients to listen to the junk-bond corporation nephrologists in the helicopter. This organization's idea of employment/rehabilitation support is for the patients to contact organizations that have nothing to do with the dialysis providers. How can that produce successful outcomes for patients if the dialysis provider has no interest in the patients' success?
Effects of Acceptance of Disability on Death or Dialysis in Chronic Kidney Disease Patients: a Three Year Prospective Cohort Study
Free, full-text, Open Access article from BMC Nephrology.
Accepted Articles Abstracts from Nephrology:

Early View Abstracts from Therapeutic Apheresis and Dialysis:

Pharmacists' Study Helps Prevent Antibiotic Induced Kidney Failure
Press release from South Dakota State University.
FDA Drug Safety Communication: SGLT2 Inhibitors -- Labels to Include Warnings About Too Much Acid in the Blood and Serious Urinary Tract Infections
bullet point New Guidelines Boost Diabetes Screening For Overweight Adults
Article from Kaiser Health News.
bullet point Free, Full-Text, Online First Articles from the Journal of the American Medical Association:
bullet point Report: Nursing Making Progress on Path to Transformation
News brief from AHANewsNow.
MedPAC To Discuss Outpatient Dialysis Services Payment Adequacy on Dec. 10
Meeting agenda and brief (1-page pdf) from the Medicare Payment Advisory Commission.


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Fri./Sat., Dec. 4-5

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  Dec. 4, 2015
Sense of Purpose in Life Linked to Lower Mortality and Cardiovascular Risk
Press release and Published Ahead-of-Print abstract from Psychosomatic Medicine.

Editor's note: Failing to help patients maintain their purpose in life should be considered iatrogenic care.

U.S. dialysis care lost its focus on the meaning and purpose of patients' lives after federal funding was secured in 1972. Tracking employment rates could have prevented this.
Home Dialyzers United Respond To Nurse's Statements in ProPublica Article

Dialysis nurse Pamela Dougherty’s complaint in Who Turned my Blue State Red? that too many of her patients have a “sense of entitlement” and do not want to work, hit a very raw nerve in the dialysis patient community.  Home Dialyzors United believes that far more patients would choose to work if they had access to better treatments, work friendly scheduling, and comprehensive rehabilitation.  Ideal treatments include home peritoneal dialysis, home hemodialysis, and nocturnal dialysis.  Studies show outcomes on these modalities are equal to and even better than that of a transplant.

However, Medicare payment policy and federal regulations favor in-center treatment. As a result, 90 percent of the nearly half million people in the United States who need dialysis are treated incenter, which benefits their clinic, not the dialyzor. Until barriers to home dialysis are removed the great majority of dialysis patients will NEED to be “entitled” to be disabled, not by choice, but by being limited in their treatment options.

Sincerely,
Denise Eilers, BSN, RN, President
Home Dialyzors United
& former home dialysis care partner
www.homedialyzorsunited.org
Medicaid-Eligible Dialysis Patients Not Fully Informed of Treatment Options, Survey Finds
Press release from Dialysis Patient Citizens.
Research from American Geriatrics Society Advances Definition of Person Centered Care for Older Adults
Press release and Early View full-text articles from the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society: ""For too long, our medical system has focused on treatment of illnesses rather than on care of a person with illnesses," explained project Principal Investigator Laura Mosqueda, MD, FAAFP, AGSF, Chair, Department of Family Medicine, Professor of Family Medicine and Gerontology, Keck School of Medicine of USC. "The values espoused in person-centered care remind us of the importance of eliciting and acting on our patients' preferences and goals. We now have a clearer vision of how to translate the aspiration of person-centered care into a reality.""
PDI in Press Abstracts:
Salivary Levels of Calcium, Phosphorus, Potassium, Albumin and Correlation with Serum Biomarkers in Hemodialysis Patients
Issue in Progress abstract from Archives of Oral Biology.
New Peer Mentoring Materials
Resources from Renal Network 11.
NEAT Study: Endovascular Fistula Creation Safe in Patients with Chronic Kidney Disease
New Drug May Help Fight Heart Failure
National Health Spending In 2014: Faster Growth Driven By Coverage Expansion And Prescription Drug Spending
Full-text article from Health Affairs.
bullet point Senate Approves Bill Repealing Much of Obamacare
Article from The Hill.
bullet point Articles from Kaiser Health News:
bullet point Patient's Mood During Medical Procedure May Affect Outcomes
Article from HealthDay.
CMS Awards Five Year $110 Million in ESRD Network Funding
News release from the CMS Blog.

Editor's note: Five more years of largely the same. Five more years of for-profit providers cheating on the data they report, making the CMS star rating system and the CROWNWeb/DOPPS/USRDS data worthless — and good scientific work impossible. Five more years of unchallenged hypocrisy by the professional leadership of U.S. dialysis care, who will continue to provide a level of care to most patients that they would never accept for themselves. Five more years of no emphasis on patient employment and/or rehabilitation, continued short hemodialysis treatments, and a poor quality of life for most dialysis patients.

For $110 million, there should be at least one ESRD Network dedicated to promoting the kind of dialysis care that makes living a purposeful and productive life possible.
ESRD QIP: Access PY 2016 Performance Score Report and Certificates Call — Last Chance to Register
Call is scheduled for Wednesday, December 9 from 2:30-3:30pm ET.
CMS Issues ICD-10 Resource Guide for Medical Specialties


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Thursday, Dec. 3

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  Dec. 3, 2015
Feeling Thankful: Approaching 50 Years Since Starting Dialysis
Posting by Nancy Spaeth from the KidneyViews blog.

Editor's note: Please listen to her comments during a discussion panel from an August 2015 KHI conference. There are many profound statements by patients during this panel discussion. Nancy Spaeth begins speaking at the 15:40 mark.

She states, "I'm hoping we can get back to the 1960s."

Nocturnal dialysis provided a quality of life that has never been surpassed. Unfortunately, as the most recent DOPPS data shows, the U.S. provides the shortest hemodialysis treatment times and administers lower doses of ESAs compared to other first-world countries. Is there any better example of the power of perverse financial incentives in American for-profit medicine?
Bill: 25 Years Living Well on Hemodialysis
Profile of Bill Peckham from the ESRD National Coordinating Center.

Bill has been on hemodialysis for 25 years and has worked for most of that time. “I think of it as a marathon,” he said. “I’m coming to the point where I can retire with a pension. That’s amazing. I didn’t think I would be able to work when I started [dialysis].”
German Dialysis Data Now Available from the DOPPS Practice Monitor
News release from the Dialysis Outcomes and Practice Patterns Study Program.
Dialysis Modality, Vascular Access and Mortality in End-Stage Kidney Disease: a Binational Registry-based Cohort Study
Accepted Article abstract from Nephrology.
Free, Full-Text Articles from Canadian Journal of Kidney Health and Disease:
Serum PTH Reference Values Established with an Automated 3rd-Generation Assay in Vitamin D-Replete Subjects with Normal Renal Function. Consequence for the Diagnosis of Primary Hyperparathyroidism and the Classification of Dialysis Patients
Accepted Preprint abstract from European Journal of Endocrinology.
The Burden of Comorbidity in People with Chronic Kidney Disease Stage 3: A Cohort Study
Free, full-text, Open Access article from BMC Nephrology.
Cardiovascular Risk among Hypertensive Adolescents and the Potential Benefit of a Screen and Treat Strategy
Free, full-text, First Online editorial from Pediatric Nephrology.
Gram-Negative Organisms in Peritoneal Dialysis Peritonitis: an Early Indication for Surgery in Patients with Hemolytic Uremic Syndrome?
Online First abstract from Pediatric Surgery International.
Study Reveals Urine Markers of Kidney Disease Progression
Press release from University of Michigan Health System.
Depression Contributes to Preventable Hospitalizations in Danish Study
Readers Name Biggest Medical Stories of 2015
(Registration required, but free.) Article from Medscape Medical News.
bullet point Novel Study: Lower Patient Satisfaction in Hospitals That Employ More Nurses Trained Abroad
Press release from University of Pennsylvania School of Nursing.
bullet point 'Nurse Hero' Posting Goes Viral
Facebook posting and video response by husband.
bullet point States Where Certified Nurse Specialists Can Practice and Prescribe Without Physician Supervision
2-page pdf from the National Association of Clinical Nurse Specialists web site.
bullet point Report from Paris
Free, full-text perspective piece from The New England Journal of Medicine.
bullet point OSHA Webpage Focuses on Preventing Violence in Health Care Settings
CMS: National Health Spending Grows 5.3% in 2014
News brief from AHANewsNow. Press release from CMS.
MedPAC Comment on CMS's Memorandum Entitled "Request for Comments: Enhancements to the Star Ratings for 2017 and Beyond"
3-page PDF from the Medicare Payment Advisory Commission.


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Wednesday, Dec. 2

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  Dec. 2, 2015
FDA Recall Notices from Enforcement Report for November 25, 2015:
New Modules from the Home Hemodialysis Manual from the International Society for Hemodialysis:
New Data Shows Drop In U.S. Diabetes Cases
Article from HealthDay. News summary from Kaiser Health News. Article from Hospitals & Health Networks. Data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Free, Full-Text Articles from PLOS ONE:
International DOPPS Study: Functional Dependence and Mortality
News item from the Dialysis Outcomes and Practice Patterns Study Program.
Inequalities in Access to Pediatric ESRD Care: a Global Health Challenge
Free, full-text, First Online editorial from Pediatric Nephrology.
The Role of Dialysis Membranes on Intradialytic Selenium Removal and on Selenium Status in Patients Receiving Renal Replacement Therapy
Issue-in-Progress abstract from Blood Purification.
Safety of Warfarin Therapy in Chronic Hemodialysis Patients: a Prospective Cohort Study
First Online abstract from Clinical and Experimental Nephrology.
Evaluation of Serum NGAL and Hepcidin Levels in Chronic Kidney Disease Patients
Abstract from Renal Failure.
Cinacalcet As Adjunctive Therapy in Pseudohypoparathyroidism Type 1b
First Online abstract from Pediatric Nephrology.
Cutaneous Control of Blood Pressure
Published Ahead-of-Print abstract from Current Opinion in Nephrology and Hypertension.
Sleep Apnea Devices Lower Blood Pressure
Article from HealthDay.
New York Is First U.S. City With Salt Warning on Restaurant Menus
Article from MedPage Today (registration required).
Utah Prison Settles Suit after Inmate Missed Dialysis, Died
Article from The Salt Lake Tribune.
Breaking News from the Renal Physicians Association
Five items for December.
Study 'Opens Gate' to Understanding Deperssion
Enhanced Treatment for Hepatitis C Could Cut Prevalence by 80%
Clinical Workstations: An Overlooked Reservoir for Deadly Bacteria?
HHS: Dramatic Downturn in Hospital-Acquired Conditions
Articles from Kaiser Health News and MedPage Today (registration required).
bullet point Aid-In-Dying Laws Only Accentuate Need For Palliative Care, Providers Say
Article from Kaiser Health News.
bullet point Ever Wonder Why Rx Drugs Cost So Much In The U.S.?
News summary from Kaiser Health News.
bullet point New Discovery: This Is Why We Do Not Constantly Get ill despite Viruses and Bacteria
bullet point Doctor Burnout Rates on the Rise
bullet point Why Online Doctor Ratings Are Good Medicine
bullet point Major Insurer Says It Will Offer Individual Life Insurance Coverage To People With HIV
Implementation of Changes in the End-Stage Renal Disease (ESRD) Prospective Payment System (PPS) for Calendar Year (CY) 2016
CMS Program Transmittal notice and 20-page pdf from MLN.


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Tuesday, Dec. 1

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  Dec. 1, 2015
New Paper from the DOPPS Compares International Trends in ESA Utilization and Hemoglobin Levels
News release from the Dialysis Outcomes and Practice Patterns Study Program. JASN Express abstract.
The 2015 KDOQI Hemodialysis Adequacy Guideline Update—What's New
Posting from the AJKD blog.
Post Technical Expert Panels (TEP) Conference Calls Announced (open meetings):
  • ESRD DFC Star Rating Post-TEP Conference Call (1-page pdf)
    December 2, 2015: 1:00pm – 2:00pm ET
  • ESRD DFC Star Rating Post-TEP Conference Call (1-page pdf)
    December 4, 2015: 1:00pm – 2:00pm ET
  • End-Stage Renal Disease Evaluation of Potential Prevalent Comorbidity Adjustments in the Standardized Hospitalization Ratio (SHR) and the Standardized Mortality Ratio (SMR) Post-TEP Conference Call (1-page pdf)
    December 7, 2015: 1:00pm – 3:00pm ET
Free, Full-Text, Articles in Press from American Journal Of Kidney Diseases:
Free, Full-Text, Issue-In-Progress Articles from Kidney & Blood Pressure Research:
Factors Associated with Peritoneal Dialysis Catheter Complications in Children
Article in Press abstract from Journal of Pediatric Surgery.
The Impact of Dialysis on the Survival of Patients with Immunoglobulin Light Chain (AL) Amyloidosis Undergoing Autologous Stem Cell Transplantation
Advance Access abstract from NDT.
Exclusion of Patients With Kidney Disease From Cardiovascular Trials
Online First commentary and research letter extract from JAMA Internal Medicine.
Recognition and Management of Hypertension in Older Persons: Focus on African Americans
(Registration required, but free.) Free, full-text article from Journal of the American Geriatrics Society via Medscape Nephrology.
Rockwell Medical's Triferic Receives Permanent J-Code for Renal Drug Reimbursement
Organ Donation Law 'Revolution' Starts in Wales
International Xenotransplantation Congress Highlights Major Advances in the Field
Free, Full-Text Articles from Annals Of Internal Medicine:
bullet point A Tale Of Two Obamacare Co-Op Insurers: One Standing, One Falling
Article from WNPR and Kaiser Health News.
 


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Monday, Nov. 30

Post Technical Expert Panels (TEP) Conference Calls Announced (open meetings):
  • ESRD DFC Star Rating Post-TEP Conference Call (1-page pdf)
    December 2, 2015: 1:00pm – 2:00pm ET
  • ESRD DFC Star Rating Post-TEP Conference Call (1-page pdf)
    December 4, 2015: 1:00pm – 2:00pm ET
  • End-Stage Renal Disease Evaluation of Potential Prevalent Comorbidity Adjustments in the Standardized Hospitalization Ratio (SHR) and the Standardized Mortality Ratio (SMR) Post-TEP Conference Call (1-page pdf)
    December 7, 2015: 1:00pm – 3:00pm ET
Rockwell Medical's Triferic Receives Permanent J-Code for Renal Drug Reimbursement
FacebookTwitter
  Nov. 30, 2015
Emergency Rooms Are Becoming the Only Dialysis Option for the Undocumented
Article from The Commercial Appeal (Memphis, TN).
Body Composition and Mortality Predictors in Hemodialysis Patients
Article in Press abstract from Journal of Renal Nutrition.
Lessons Learned from EVOLVE for Planning of Future Randomized Trials in Patients on Dialysis
CJASN Express abstract.
Clinical and Patient Reported Outcomes of Chinese Patients Undergoing Hemodialysis in Hospital or in the Community: A 1-Year Longitudinal Study
Accepted Article abstract from Nephrology.
Focus on Renal Congestion in Heart Failure
Free, full-text, Advance Access article from Clinical Kidney Journal.
Factors Associated with Leisure Time Physical Activity among Patients Undergoing Hemodialysis
Free, full-text, Open Access article from BMC Nephrology.
Evaluating Hazardous Waste Generation in For-Profit Outpatient Hemodialysis Centers
Early View abstract from Journal of Renal Care.
Western Blood Pressure Guidelines May Not Be Appropriate for Asian Populations, Experts Say
Full-text article from BMJ Heart Asia.
bullet point A Controversial Rewrite For Rules To Protect Humans In Experiments
Article from NPR.
 


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