Fresenius Medical Care Celebrates Progress in Helping Patients with Kidney Failure Live Longer
Better Care, Earlier Diagnosis and Treatment of Related Conditions, are Improving Patients’ Health
WALTHAM, Mass. – March 5, 2015 – Fresenius Medical Care North America (FMCNA), the nation’s leading dialysis provider with more than 2,150 dialysis facilities nationwide, is celebrating National Kidney Month this March by recognizing recent progress in helping patients with kidney failure live longer, while reaffirming its mission to improve the quality of life of dialysis patients, every day.
Data from the 2014 United States Renal Data System (USRDS) annual report suggests that while the total number of end stage renal disease (ESRD) patients in the United States continues to rise, at least part of that increase is the result of patients actually living longer. Likewise, the Peer Kidney Care Initiative’s 2014 Dialysis Care & Outcomes report agrees that overall ESRD mortality rates have declined since 2004, noting that “declining mortality rates translate to longer lives, as illustrated by displays of gains in expected remaining life-times and deaths averted.”
Healthcare experts attribute the increased longevity to earlier detection and treatment of chronic kidney disease (CKD) and timely patient referrals to kidney specialists. Better detection and care of risk factors such as diabetes and hypertension is also contributing to slower disease progression.
Fresenius Medical Care has made significant achievements in enhancing the care of patients with kidney failure, including reducing both patient mortality rates and avoidable hospitalizations.
FMCNA is helping patients live longer by providing:
Exceptional care and the latest treatment options: Home dialysis and in-center nighttime dialysis, for example, can provide health benefits by allowing longer and/or slower dialysis treatments. This gives patients the option of having more free time to continue working, or to enjoy their favorite activities.
Healthy Lifestyles initiatives: These programs, designed to encourage patients to stay active and follow a healthy diet, include consultations with renal dietitians and social workers on staff at each facility. Dietitians help dialysis patients learn how to eat a healthy diet while strictly limiting their intake of foods containing high levels of potassium, phosphorus, and salt, which can be harmful to them. FMCNA also has a partnership with celebrity chef Aaron McCargo, Jr. to create delicious dialysis-friendly recipes that inspire patients to enjoy eating – while staying within their dietary guidelines.
Treatment Options Program (TOPs): Offered regularly across the country and open to the public at no cost, these programs provide valuable information about managing kidney disease. They help CKD patients and their families plan for and transition more smoothly to dialysis or organ transplants.
Innovative patient research: Through its global network of medical experts and clinical research, FMCNA strives to keep patients healthier, whether through more effective treatment of related conditions such as diabetes and cardiovascular disease, better management of anemia, or promotion of flu shots and other preventive care.
“Our physicians, nurses and other caregivers are extending the lives of dialysis patients and reducing hospitalizations by working as multi-disciplinary teams to provide excellent care both in and out of the treatment chair,” said Franklin W. Maddux, M.D., FMCNA’s chief medical officer and executive vice president for clinical and scientific affairs. “Our patient-centric approach to care and treatment is designed to help patients with end stage kidney disease live a better life.”
Dialysis is a life-sustaining process that cleans waste products from the blood and removes extra fluids when a person’s kidneys fail.
About Fresenius Medical Care North America
Through its leading network of more than 2,150 dialysis facilities in North America and vascular access centers, laboratory, pharmacy and affiliated hospitals and nephrology practices, Fresenius Medical Care provides renal services to hundreds of thousands of people throughout the United States, Mexico and Canada. It is also the continent’s top producer of dialysis equipment, dialyzers and related disposable products and a major supplier of renal pharmaceuticals.