RenalWEB Home Page
 

This Legislation Watch on RenalWEB tracks pending dialysis-related legislation at both federal and state levels. Features include links to bill summaries, sample letters to send legislators, related news articles, and position papers from contributors. You can access information by clicking on the links listed to the left of this paragraph.

The latest federal budget surplus estimates show that there is less money than previously anticipated to fund the government’s programs. As a result, competition for federal healthcare dollars will be fierce. Therefore, participation in lobbying and letter writing to legislators are more important this year than they have ever been.

If you are interested providing a sample letter or supporting information for any legislation, please contact RenalWEB at renalweb@renalweb.com.

 

 


  LATEST NEWS AND ACTION ITEMS
 
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Senate Passes Debt Ceiling, Funding Bill with Hurricane Relief - News brief from AHANews. - September 7, 2017

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House Passes Harvey Relief Package; Hurricane Irma Emergencies Declared - News brief from AHANews. - September 6, 2017

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If Anyone Can Work Miracles To Get Bipartisan Solution On Health Care It May Be These Two Senators - News summary from Kaiser Health News. - September 1, 2017

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Public Opinion about the Future of the Affordable Care Act - Free, full-text, First Online special report from The New England Journal of Medicine. - August 31, 2017

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Advertising Budget for Obamacare to Be Cut 90 Percent: US Health Agency - Articles from Reuters and Kaiser Health NewsPress release from CMS. - August 31, 2017

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Sen. Kamala Harris Announces She Will Co-Sponsor Single-Payer Healthcare - Article from The Hill.  - August 30, 2017

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Trump Administration Still Sabotaging Affordable Care Act, Sebelius Says - Article and podcast from KCUR. - August 18, 2017

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Iowa's Only Obamacare Insurer Requests 57% Rate Increase - Article from The Hill. - August 17, 2017

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Democrats in Congress to Explore Creating an Expert Panel on Trump's Mental Health - Article From STAT. - August 16, 2017

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Eliminating Obamacare Subsidies Would Up Premiums by 20 Percent: CBO - Articles from HealthDay and Kaiser Health News. - August 15, 2017

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Survey: Most Doctors Back Single Payer - Article from HealthLeaders Media. - August 14, 2017

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Poll: 78 Percent Say Trump Should Try to Make Obamacare Work - Articles from The Hill and Kaiser Health News. - August 11, 2017

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Free, Full-Text, Online First Perspective Pieces from The New England Journal Of Medicine - August 9, 2017

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Anthem to Pare Back Obamacare Offerings in Nevada and Georgia - Article from Reuters. - August 7, 2017

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The Courts May Have Just Checked Trump’s Ability To Sabotage Obamacare - News summary from Kaiser Health News. - August 3, 2017

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Kidney Care Partners Applaud Senate Introduction of Bipartisan Legislation to Improve and Expand Access to Kidney Care - Press release. - August 2017

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Even Without Congress, Trump Can Still Cut Medicaid Enrollment - Article from Kaiser Health News. - July 28, 2017

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The Medicare Access and CHIP Reauthorization Act: Implications for Nephrology - JASN Express abstract. - July 28, 2017

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5 Ways White House Can Use Its Muscle To Undercut Obamacare - Article from Kaiser Health News. - July 28, 2017

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McCain's 'No' Vote Kills "Skinny Repeal" in Early Morning Drama on Capitol Hill - Article from AP via STAT. Article from CNN. - July 28, 2017

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Articles from The Hill - July 28, 2017

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Turmoil in the Individual Insurance Market — Where It Came From and How to Fix It - Free, Full-Text Article from The New England Journal Of Medicine. - July 27, 2017

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Senate GOP Wins Vote To Debate Health Care, Then Loses Vote On ACA Replacement Bill - Posting from the Health Affairs Blog. Article from HealthDay. - July 26, 2017

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Articles from Kaiser Health News - July 26, 2017

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Task Force Suggests Amendments to Stark Law, Anti-Kickback Statute - Article from HealthLeaders Media. - July 26, 2017

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U.S. House Approves Measure to Get Dialysis Clinics Certified Faster - Articles from KSNT.com (Kansas) and WIBW.com. Article from Modern Healthcare (registration required). - July 25, 2017

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With Pence as Tie-breaker, Senate Votes to Debate Obamacare Overhaul - Article from HealthDay. - July 25, 2017

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News Summaries from Kaiser Health News - July 25, 2017

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Articles from Kaiser Health News - July 24, 2017

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House Panel Launches Initiative to Reduce Medicare Regulations, Mandates - News brief from AHANews. - July 24, 2017

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Articles from Kaiser Health News - July 21, 2017

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House Committee Approves Funding for NKF Priorities - Posting from the National Kidney Foundation's Advocacy in Action blog. - July 20, 2017

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Bill Would Give Dialysis Clinics Option to Seek Certification from a Third Party - Article from Nephrology News & Issues. - July 20, 2017

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Senate Republicans Complain of Chaos in Healthcare Effort - Article from Reuters. Article from The Hill. - July 20, 2017

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What's Ahead for Health Reform in 2018? - Article from HealthDay. - July 20, 2017

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CBO: GOP Plan Would Spike Premiums, Cut 32M From Insurance Rolls - Posting from Roll Call. Article from Kaiser Health News. - July 19, 2017

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Republicans Meet Late into Night As Trump Demands New Healthcare Plan
Article from Reuters. - July 19, 2017

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Republican Push to End Obamacare Collapses in Senate - Articles from Reuters and HealthDay. Analysis from Kaiser Health News. - July 17, 2017

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Two More GOP Senators Oppose Health Care Overhaul, Dooming Bill for Now - Articles from AP, HealthDay, Reuters, Roll Call, and Kaiser Health News. - July 17, 2017

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Bill to Reauthorize, Expand Medicare Advantage Special Needs Plans Clears Committee - News brief from AHANews. - July 14, 2017

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Articles from Kaiser Health News - July 14, 2017

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Five Takeaways from the GOP's Healthcare Reboot - Articles from The Hill, HealthDay, and HealthLeaders Media. - July 13, 2017

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New Senate Republicans Healthcare Bill Already in Trouble - Article fromReuters and The Hill. - July 13, 2017

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Senate May Vote on Revised Healthcare Bill Next Week - Article from Reuters. News summary from Kaiser Health News. - July 11, 2017

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Single-Payer Healthcare Gains Traction with Democrats - Article from The Hill. - July 9, 2017

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McConnell Concedes Bill Might Not Pass, But Reaffirms Need To Shore Up Individual Markets - News summary from Kaiser Health News. - July 7, 2017

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Articles from The Hill - July 4, 2017

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GOP Senators Warming to Repeal Then Replace on ObamaCare - Article from The Hill. - July 2, 2017

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Kidney Care Partners Applauds House Ways & Means Committee’s Bipartisan Legislation to Improve and Expand Access to Kidney Care - Press release. - July 2017

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McConnell Wants To Get Revised Plan To CBO By Friday - News summary from Kaiser Health News. - June 29, 2017

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GOP Infighting Erupts over Healthcare Bill - Article from The Hill. - June 28, 2017

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Act Now to Protect Healthcare for Americans with Kidney Disease - Posting from the KidneyViews Blog. - June 27, 2017

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Senate GOP Leaders Delay Vote on Health Reform Bill - Article from HealthDay. - June 27, 2017

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Analysis: Mitch McConnell Plans To Hide Trumpcare's Pain Until After Midterms - Article from Kaiser Health News. - June 27, 2017

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Statement of Eleanor D. Lederer, MD, FASN, President, the American Society of Nephrology, on the Better Care Reconciliation Act of 2017 - (3-page pdf) Press release. - June 26, 2017

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Republican Healthcare Bill Imperiled with 22 Million Seen Losing Insurance - Articles from Reuters, HealthDay, AHANews, and Kaiser Health News. - June 26, 2017

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AMA to Mitch McConnell: Legislation Violates Standard of "First, Do No Harm" - (2-page pdf) Letter from the American Medical Association. - June 26, 2017

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With Health Plan, GOP Would Drastically Cut Medicaid And Fundamentally Reshape Program - News summary from Kaiser Health News. - June 23, 2017

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Senate Plan Would Give Corporations, High Income Earners A $1 Trillion Tax Cut - News summary from Kaiser Health News. - June 23, 2017

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HHS Working on Replacement for Obama Dialysis Rule - Court Filing - News item via Reuters. - June 23, 2017

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Senate Better Care Reconciliation Act is Not Better for Kidney Patients - Press release from the National Kidney Foundation. - June 23, 2017

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Senate Health Bill Would Revamp Medicaid, Alter ACA Guarantees, Cut Premium Support - Articles from Kaiser Health News. - June 22, 2017

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Senate Republicans Reveal Their Replacement for Obamacare - Article from HealthDay. - June 22, 2017

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Hospital Opposition to Healthcare Overhaul Continues With Senate Version - Article from HFMA. - June 22, 2017

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Articles from The Hill - June 22, 2017

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Articles from Kaiser Health News - June 21, 2017

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Senate Dems To Hold Late-Night Protest over ObamaCare Repeal - Article from The Hill. - June 18, 2017

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Effective Legislative Advocacy — Lessons from Successful Medical Trainee Campaigns - Free, Full-Text, Online First Perspective Pieces from the New England Journal Of Medicine. - June 22, 2017

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Doctors Opposed to SB 349 (Lara) Say Bill Will Jeopardize Patient Access to Life-Saving Dialysis - Press release from NO on SB 349. - June 15, 2017

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Lawmakers That Trump Pushed Into Signing 'Mean' Bill Peeved At The President's Candid Comments - News summary from Kaiser Health News. - June 15, 2017

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Leading Medical Groups Mobilize Against Obamacare Repeal - Article from HealthDay. - June 13, 2017

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Expanding Access, Supporting Research and Sustaining Medicare for Individuals with Kidney Disease - Article by Rep. Tom Marino from The Hill. - June 12, 2017

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If Insurance Market Crashes, Can Lawmakers Put The Pieces Back Together? - Article from Kaiser Health News. - June 8, 2017

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The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) Seeks Public Input on Reducing the Regulatory Burdens of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA) - Press release. - June 8, 2017

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States Scramble to Prevent Obamacare Exodus - Article from The Hill. - June 4, 2017

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Dialysis Firms Get Help From Congress in Overturning Charity Ban - Article from Bloomberg. Letter from 183 members of Congress.- May 31, 2017

OpenSecrets.org profiles of DaVita HealthCare Partners and Fresenius Medical Care.

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MACRA: The Lesser of 2 Evils? - Posting from Acumen Physicians Solutions. - May 29, 2017

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Dark Cloud of Pessimism (on healthcare) Settles Over Senate: ‘If I Had To Bet My House, I’d Bet We Don’t Get It Done’ - News summary from Kaiser Health News. Article from The Hill. - May 26, 2017

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CMS Issues Guide to MACRA Technical Assistance Resources - News brief from AHANews. - May 26, 2017

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"Chronic Kidney Disease Improvement in Research and Treatment Act" (HR. 2644) Introduced - News release from Kidney Care Partners. HR. 2644. - May 25, 2017

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Strategies To Defend Unpopular GOP Health Bill: Euphemisms, False Statements And Deleted Comments - Article from Kaiser Health News. - May 25, 2017

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CBO Greenlights Telehealth Provisions in Senate's CHRONIC Care Act - Blog posting from Lexology. - May 25, 2017

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Senate Finance Committee Passes Bill That Would Expand Telehealth Options - Article from Nephrology News & Issues. - May 24, 2017

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Under US Republican Bill, 23 Million Would Lose Health Coverage: Watchdog - Article and video from Reuters. Articles from Kaiser Health News and HealthDay. - May 24, 2017

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Tab For Single-Payer Proposal In California Could Run $400 Billion - Article from Kaiser Health News. - May 23, 2017

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Study: House Obamacare Bill Cuts $43 Billion in Medicaid Funds for Children - Article from The Hill. - May 18, 2017

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Senate Finance Unanimously Passes Medicare Chronic Care Bill With Tweaks - News brief from AHANews. Article extract from InsideHealthPolicy.com. - May 18, 2017

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6.3M People With Preexisting Conditions Could Face Higher Premiums Under GOP Health Plan - Articles from Kaiser Health News. - May 17, 2017

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May 16: Senate Finance Committee Hearing on Chronic Care Bill - Check back for live video of the hearing. This hearing is on the Creating High-Quality Results and Outcomes Necessary to Improve Chronic (CHRONIC) Care Act of 2017 (S. 870). - May 16, 2017

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Preexisting Conditions Took Spotlight In House Debates, But Medicaid Moves To Center Stage In Senate - News summary from Kaiser Health News. - May 16, 2017

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American Medical Association: Millions Could Lose Coverage in GOP Health Plan - Article from The Hill. - May 15, 2017

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Rival Senate Healthcare Group Seeks to Make Waves - Article from The Hill. - May 14, 2017

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Quiz: How Much Do You Really Know about MACRA? - Article from Medical Economics. - May 13, 2017

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Poll: Majority Disapprove of GOP Healthcare Plan - Article from The Hill. - May 11, 2017

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People With Pre-Existing Health Issues Fear Repeal-and-Replace Bill - Article from HealthDay. - May 11, 2017

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GOP Healthcare Effort Dogged by Gender Inequity - Article from The Hill. - May 9, 2017

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Front-Line Physicians Respond to AHCA Vote - Slideshow from Medical Economics. - May 10, 2017

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Articles from Kaiser Health News - May 8, 2017

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Preexisting Conditions That May Not Be Covered by Republican Health Care Bill - Article and video from CNN. The list includes:  - May 6, 2017

  • Dialysis
  • Organ transplants
  • Renal failure
  • Diabetes
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Articles from Kaiser Health News - May 5, 2017

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Articles from Kaiser Health News - May 5, 2017

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Articles from STAT - May 5, 2017

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Articles from HealthDay - May 4, 2017

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House Obamacare Bill Won't Fix Healthcare System, Doctors Say - Article from Medical Economics. - May 4, 2017

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National Kidney Foundation Statement on MacArthur Amendment to the American Health Care Act - Press release. - May 3, 2017

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GOP Rushing to Vote on Healthcare without Analysis of Changes - Article from The Hill. - May 3, 2017

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Living Donor Protection Act Can Lower Costs and Save Lives - Article from Nephrology News & Issues. - April 11, 2017

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Fair Access for Safe and Timely (FAST) Generics Act Reintroduced in Congress - News item from Inside Health Policy. - April 10, 2017

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Senate Finance Committee Members Reintroduce Chronic Care Bill - Article extract from InsideHealthPolicy.com. This discussion of the 2016 version (9-page pdf) includes expanding access to home dialysis therapy by allowing patients on home dialysis to receive required monthly clinical assessments via telehealth in lieu of face-to-face visits.  However, the bill proposes that patients be required to have a face-to-face assessment with a nephrologist at least once every three months.- April 6, 2017

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For Better Or Worse, Trump And GOP Now Own Health Care - Article from Kaiser Health News. - April 4, 2017

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Lawmakers On Both Sides Dig In Heels Over Drastic Cuts To NIH Funding - News summary from Kaiser Health News. - April 4, 2017

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Replacing the Affordable Care Act — Lessons From Behavioral Economics - Free, full-text, New Online viewpoint article from the Journal of the American Medical Association. - April 3, 2017

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RPA Public Policy in a Minute: Chronic Care Act of 2017, S.870 - Video from the Renal Physicisians Association. - April 2017

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Senator Bernie Sanders Announces 'Medicare for All' Bill - Posting from the National Nurses United blog. - March 29, 2017

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ASN and AAKP Advocates are on Capitol Hill Urging Congress to Support Kidney Disease Research and the Living Donor Protection Act - Press release from the American Society of Nephrology. - March 28, 2017

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McConnell Throws Cold Water on Reviving Obamacare Repeal ¦ House GOP Insists They Aren't Giving up ¦ Price Faces New Task of Overseeing Health Law - Article from The Hill. - March 28, 2017

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Penn Researchers Call for Better Laws Covering Patient Incentives to Improve Care - March 22, 2017

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Medicare Payment Advisory Commission (MedPAC) Releases Report on Medicare Payment Policy - (2-page pdf) Press release, fact sheet (4-page pdf), and full 2017 Report to Congress (483-page pdf). Chapter 6 (28-page pdf) on outpatient dialysis services. - March 15, 2017

"Recommendation: The Congress should increase the outpatient dialysis base payment rate by the update specified in current law for calendar year 2018."

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Republican Plan to Repeal Obamacare Would Leave Millions Uninsured: Report - Articles from Reuters and HealthDayNews brief from AHANews. - March 14, 2017

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How Retooled Health Law Might Treat Those With A History Of Illness - Article from Kaiser Health News. - March 13, 2017

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Congressional Budget Office Ignites Firestorm with ObamaCare Repeal Score - Article and report on White House analysis from The Hill. - March 13, 2017

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Trump Employs ‘Salesman Tactics’ To Line Up Hill Support For Health Law Replacement - News summary from Kaiser Health News. - March 10, 2017

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Republicans Forge Ahead on Obamacare Repeal despite US Budget Worries - Article from Reuters. - March 10, 2017

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New Health Care Bill Clears House Committees - Article from HealthDay. - March 9, 2017

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Five Ways The GOP Health Bill Would Reverse Course From The ACA - Article and news summary from Kaiser Health News. - March 8, 2017

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Physicians Reject House ACA Replacement Bill - Statement by the president of the American Medical Association. Other groups opposing the bill include AARP, American Hospital Association, American Nurses Association, and National Nurses United. - March 8, 2017

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U.S. Republicans Unveil Plan to Dismantle Obamacare, Critics Pounce - Article from Reuters. Article and news summary from Kaiser Health News. - March 8, 2017

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News Summaries on ACA Repeal/Replace from Kaiser Health News - March 7, 2017

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U.S. Republicans Expected to Unveil Healthcare Bill This Week - Article from Reuters. - March 6, 2017

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Living Donor Protection Act Reintroduced in House - Article from Nephrology News & Issues. - March 3, 2017

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House Panel Plans to Mark up Obamacare Repeal Bill Next Week - Article from The Hill. - March 1, 2017

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Trump Backs Healthcare Tax Credit amid Conservative Opposition - Article from The Hill. - February 28, 2017

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Hospitals, Both Rural And Urban, Dread Losing Ground With Health Law Repeal - Article from Kaiser Health News. Free, full-text, New Online perspective piece from the Journal of the American Medical Association. - February 28, 2017

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Step Therapy—Clinical Algorithms, Legislation, and Optimal Prescribing - Free, full-text, New Online viewpoint article from the Journal of the American Medical Association. - February 28, 2017

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Protections in the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA) - Posting from the KidneyViews blog. - February 23, 2017

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Right-To-Die Fight Hits National Stage - Article from Kaiser Health News. - February 16, 2017

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Repealing the ACA without a Replacement — The Risks to American Health Care - Free, full-text perspective piece by B.H. Obama from The New England Journal of Medicine. Related Online First perspective pieces - February 9, 2017

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Trump Order on Regulations Could Create Hurdles for FDA, Cures Act - Article from STAT. - January 30, 2017

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Medicare's Coverage Of Therapy Services Again Is In Center Of Court Dispute - Article from Kaiser Health News. - January 30, 2017

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Republican Senators Unveil ACA Replacement Bill That Lets States Keep Obamacare Or Opt Into Alternative - Articles from HealthDay and The Hill. - January 23, 2017

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Articles from Kaiser Health News - January 23, 2017

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Health Law Has Never Been More Popular — Just As GOP Is Poised To Dismantle It - News summary from Kaiser Health News. - January 18, 2017

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Trump's HHS Secretary Pick Tom Price Invested in Company, Then Introduced a Bill To Help It - Article from CNN. Other conflict-of-interest articles about Tom Price regarding PAC support and a sweetheart deal from Kaiser Health News. - January 17, 2017

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GOP Dismissive Of Trump’s Medicare ‘Bidding’ Idea — Long A Non-Starter — To Curb Drug Prices - News summary from Kaiser Health News. - January 13, 2017

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Articles from Kaiser Health News - January 13, 2017

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Senate Approves Measure Launching Obamacare Repeal Process - Article from Reuters. Article from The Hill. News summary from Kaiser Health News. - January 13, 2017

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The 21st Century Cures Act — A View from the NIH - Free, Full-Text Articles from the New England Journal Of Medicine. - January 12, 2017

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DaVita CEO: ESRD Reg Likely Won't Make Short List For Congressional Review Act - Article extract only from InsideHealthPolicy.com. Press release from the American Kidney Fund. - January 11, 2017

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The Worst That Could Happen: Industry Braces For Repeal’s Possibly ‘Devastating’ Consequences - News summary from Kaiser Health News. - January 9, 2017

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Repealing the ACA without a Replacement — The Risks to American Health Care - Free, full-text, Online First perspective piece from the New England Journal of Medicine. - January 6, 2017

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Study: ACA Repeal Would Increase Uncompensated Care by $1.1 Trillion over 10 Years - News brief from AHANews. - January 6, 2017

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Proposed Legislation Expands Option for Home Clinic Visits by Telehealth - Posting from the KidneyViews blog.  - January 5, 2017

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New "21st Century Cures" Legislation — Speed and Ease vs Science - Free, full-text, New Online viewpoint article from the Journal of the American Medical Association. - January 5, 2017

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Vowing To Jettison Obamacare, Republicans Face Immediate Resistance And Risks - Articles from Kaiser Health News and The Hill. - January 3, 2017

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Resolution Introduced to Start Process to Repeal and Replace the ACA - News brief from AHANews. - January 3, 2017

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House, Senate Headed for Clash on Medicare - Article from The Hill. - January 1, 2017

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Bill Would Give Physicians Lead on Advanced Illness Care - Article from Medical Economics. - December 25, 2016

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As GOP Prepares For Repeal, Study Adds To Growing Evidence Health Law Is Working - News summary from Kaiser Health News. - December 21, 2016

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Bill Introduced in Senate Would Expand Telehealth Options for Home Dialysis Patients - Article from Nephrology News & Issues. - December 19, 2016

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A Look at Republican Plans for Repealing and Replacing Obamacare - Free, full-text article from the Journal of the American Medical Association. - December 6, 2016


Top of Page

 STATE LEGISLATION

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California Patients, Workers Push Bill to Reform Dialysis Treatment - Article from Public News Service. - September 8, 2017

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Dialysis Bills in California Legislature Head to Floor for Votes - Article from Sacramento Business Journal. - September 6, 2017

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Freseno Patients, Providers Rally for California Dialysis Bill - August 25, 2017

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California's Former Director of Finance: SB 349 Would Increase Costs to Care for Medi-Cal Patients on Dialysis by Up to $270 Million Annually - Press release from NO on SB 349. - August 16, 2017

Editor's note: This analysis — or worst case scenario based on the closing of many clinics — was prepared by a Republican political consultant who was in Arnold Schwarzenegger's administration.

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"Real Threat to Dialysis Patients Comes from an Unexpected Place" - Op-ed from The San Diego Union-Tribune Editorial Board. - August 11, 2017

Editor's note:
The San Diego Union-Tribune owners are "pro-conservative, pro-business, pro-military." 

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'NO on SB 349' Responds to Ballot Measures Filed by United Healthcare Workers West Union Today - Press release from the DialysisPatients1st.com web site. - August 9, 2017

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Statewide Ballot Initiative Filed in California to Improve Dialysis Patient Care, Reports SEIU-UHW - Press release. Articles from Los Angeles Times and The Sacramento Bee. - August 9, 2017

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GOP States Move To Cut Medicaid - Article from The Hill. - August 3, 2017

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California Staff Ratio Bill Would Hurt Clinics in Urban and Low Income Areas - Articles from Nephrology News & Issues. - July 28, 2017

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NAACP Endorses Dialysis Patient Care State (California) Legislation - Article from Compton Herald. - July 23, 2017

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Flawed Assumptions: Ethical Problems With Proposed Presumed Consent Legislation - Free, full-text, Early View letter to the editor from American Journal of Transplantation. - July 20, 2017

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California Assembly Bill 251 Calls for Rebates from Dialysis Providers - This bill is scheduled for a hearing before the Senate Health Committe on July 12. Article from Nephrology News & Issues. - June 29, 2017

Section 1 (c): "Dialysis clinics in California frequently charge private health insurance plans four or more times as much, and sometimes 15 to 20 times as much, as they charge Medicare for the very same dialysis treatment, but do not spend sufficient funds on ensuring quality patient care."

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Bill to Improve Dialysis Patient Care Passes California Assembly Health Committee - Article from Los Angeles Sentinel. - June 29, 2017

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California Dialysis Clinic Staff Ratio Bill Passes Assembly Health Committee - Article from Nephrology News & Issues. - June 28, 2017

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California Dialysis Clinic Staff Ratio Bill to Face State Assembly Committee on Health - Article from Nephrology News & Issues. - June 26, 2017

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Targeting Unconscionable Prescription-Drug Prices — Maryland's Anti–Price-Gouging Law - Free, Full-Text, Online First Perspective Pieces from the New England Journal Of Medicine - June 7, 2017

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Government-Run Universal Health Care Wins Vote in California Senate - Press release from National Nurses United. Article from The Sacramento Bee. News summary from Kaiser Health News. - June 1, 2017

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Bill to Enact Major Reforms in Dialysis Patient Care Passes California State Senate, Reports SEIU-UHW - Press release. Press release from No on SB 349. Article from The Sacramento Bee. - May 31, 2017

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DaVita Fires Employee One Day After Speaking at State Capitol (Sacramento) in Support of Bill to Improve Patient Care - News release from the SEIU-UHW. - May 25, 2017

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A California Bill Could Totally Disrupt The Dialysis Industry - Article from The Huffington Post. - May 25, 2017

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See Comments Section of this Article: California Bill Addresses Safety Concerns at Dialysis Clinics - Article from Kaiser Health News via Medscape Nephrology. - May 23, 2017

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California Bill Addresses Safety Concerns At Dialysis Clinics - Article from Kaiser Health News. Press release from NO on SB 349. - May 19, 2017

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California Bill Addresses Safety Concerns at Dialysis Clinics - Article from Kaiser Health News via California Healthline. - May 11, 2017

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California Lawmakers Consider Dumping Health Insurers - AP article. Press release from National Nurses United. - April 27, 2017

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Dialysis Clinic Staff Ratio Bill Approved by California Senate Judiciary Committee - Article from Nephrology News & Issues. - April 26, 2017

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California First to Address Dialysis Staffing Crisis - (Registration required, but free.) Article from Medscape Nephrology. - April 21, 2017

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Dialysis Patient Advocates, Doctors, Nurses and Clinics Strongly Oppose California Senate Bill 349 – Rigid Dialysis Clinic Staffing Mandates - Press release from BCF's (public affairs/lobbying group) web site DialysisPatients1st.com. - April 19, 2017

This proposed legislation would:

  • Require a patient-to-registered-nurse ratio of 8:1
  • Require a patient-to-dialysis-technician ratio of 3:1
  • Require a patient-to-social-worker ratio of 75:1
  • Require a minimum of 45 minutes for dialysis technicians to properly clean the equipment after each hemodialysis treatment
  • Require annual inspections of dialysis clinics

The groups opposed to SB 349 include:

  • California Dialysis Council
  • California Hospital Association
  • Association of California Healthcare Districts
  • Renal Support Network
  • Renal Physicians Association
  • National Renal Administration Association
  • American Nurses Association of California
  • California Medical Transportation Association
  • Lupus Foundation of Southern California
  • Providence Health & Services
  • Loma Linda University Medical Center – Kidney Center

On the opposing side, see this video from More Than Numbers - #FixDialysis. Background information from Nephrology News & Issues. Also see these related posts from Arts & Farces:

Editor's note: This bill is NOT opposed by the American Nephrology Nurses Association.
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California Proposes Bill To Regulate Dialysis Clinics - Article from Modern Healthcare (registration required). - March 30, 2017

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Staff Ratio Bill Advances in California - Article from Nephrology News & Issues. - March 30, 2017

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Dialysis Centers: California Bill Proposes to Improve Staffing, Inspections - Article from The Mercury News. - March 29, 2017

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California Dialysis Centers May Receive Quality Boost under New Legislation - Article from San Francisco Examiner.  - February 18, 2017

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DaVita Is Targeted by California Bill to Increase Its Staffing Levels at Clinics - Article from Denver Business Journal. Related article from Record-Bee. - February 21, 2016

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Texas Judge Upends Effort To Limit Charity Funding For Kidney Care - Kaiser Health News article via NPR. - February 14, 2016

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Prominent Democratic Consultants Sign Up to Defeat Single Payer in Colorado - Article from The Intercept. - May 3, 2016
"The anti-single-payer effort is funded almost entirely by health care industry interests, including $500,000 from Anthem Inc., the state's largest health insurance provider; $40,000 from Cigna, another large health insurer that is current in talks to merge with Anthem; $75,000 from Davita, the dialysis company; $25,000 from Delta Dental, the largest dental insurer in the state; and $100,000 from SCL Health, the faith-based hospital chain."

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In Rural States Policy Changes To Improve Access To Home Dialysis Are Vital - Posting from the Health Affairs blog. - April 12, 2016

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Proposed North Carolina Bill Could Make Blue Cross Accept Third-Party Payments for Dialysis - Article and video from WNCN.com. - December 21, 2016

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Colorado To Vote on Universal Healthcare - Article from The Hill. - November 9, 2015

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California Gov. Brown Signs Aid-in-Dying Bill Into Law - Article from KQED and Kaiser Health News. - October 5, 2015

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Calif. Lawmakers Approve Bill Requiring Drug Labeling In 5 Foreign Languages - Article from Kaiser Health News. - September 11, 2015

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California Lawmakers Pass Right-to-Die Measure - September 11, 2015

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Right-to-Try Laws - Health policy brief from Health Affairs. - March 5, 2015
"Some states have passed legislation intended to expand access to experimental treatments for patients with serious or life-threatening conditions."

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Bill to End Organ Transplant Denials for Medical Marijuana Patients Filed in California - Article from The Daily Chronic. - February 12, 2015

 

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  FIND YOUR LEGISLATORS

U.S. Representatives: You can locate your U.S. Representative

U.S. Senators: You can locate your U.S. Senators

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  FEDERAL LEGISLATION 115th CONGRESS (2017-2018)

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H 154 - Of inquiry requesting the President of the United States and directing the Secretary of Health and Human Services to transmit certain information to the House of Representatives relating to plans to repeal or replace the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act and the health-related measures of the Health Care and Education Reconciliation Act of 2010

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H 212 - Expressing the sense of the House of Representatives that any legislation to repeal the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act should include a replacement for such Act that includes certain health care consumer protections

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H 215 - Expressing the fact that the House of Representatives supports the system for prescription drug coverage provided under part D of the Medicare program and believes that changes to such system should not be part of the American Health Care Act of 2017

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S 222 - Obamacare Replacement Act
To repeal provisions of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act and provide private health insurance reform, and for other purposes.

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S 870 - Creating High-Quality Results and Outcomes Necessary to Improve Chronic (CHRONIC) Care Act of 2017
To amend title XVIII of the Social Security Act to implement Medicare payment policies designed to improve management of chronic disease, streamline care coordination, and improve quality outcomes without adding to the deficit.

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H 1072 - Obamacare Replacement Act
To repeal provisions of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act and provide private health insurance reform, and for other purposes.

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H 1270 - Living Donor Protection Act of 2017
To promote and protect from discrimination living organ donors.

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H 1628 - American Health Care Act of 2017
To provide for reconciliation pursuant to title II of the concurrent resolution on the budget for fiscal year 2017.

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S 1729 - A bill to amend title XVIII of the Social Security Act to provide for independent accreditation for dialysis facilities and assurances of high quality surveys.

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new S 1804 - Medicare for All Act of 2017
To establish a Medicare-for-all national health insurance program.

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H 2051 - FAST Generics Act of 2017
To amend the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act to ensure that eligible product developers have competitive access to approved drugs and licensed biological products, so as to enable eligible product developers to develop and test new products, and for other purposes.

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H 2644 - Chronic Kidney Disease Improvement in Research and Treatment Act of 2017
To improve the understanding of, and promote access to treatment for, chronic kidney disease, and for other purposes.

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H 3168 - To amend title XVIII of the Social Security Act to provide continued access to specialized Medicare Advantage plans for special needs individuals, and for other purposes.

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H 3178 - Medicare Part B Improvement Act of 2017
To amend title XVIII of the Social Security Act to improve the delivery of home infusion therapy and dialysis and the application of the Stark rule under the Medicare program, and for other purposes.

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  LOBBYING AND LETTER WRITING

It is important to convince Senators and Representatives to cosponsor the bill through grassroots letters and lobbying. A bill that has wide, bipartisan support in both the House and Senate has a better chance of being enacted into law. When the House and Senate leaders choose bills to include in a Medicare package, they will look for bills that have cosponsors from a variety of geographic locations, from both political parties, and support from Members on the Committees that have jurisdiction over the program being effected.

Do not e-mail your Member of Congress, but instead take the time to type or hand write a letter. ("Copy and paste" the sample letters to save time and then edit them appropriately.) It will get a much better response from your Senators and Representatives. Messages coming from the people who elected them really do receive the most attention and are an effective educational tool.


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 CONGRESSIONAL COMMITTEES

Congress.gov - Legislative Information on the Internet from the Library of Congress

House of Representatives - Homepage

Senate - Homepage

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 OTHER RESOURCES

Advocacy & Government Relations from the National Kidney Foundation web site
Kidney Care Partners web site

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RenalWEB Home Page