ESRD in the Budget Act of 2018

Kidney Care Partners ( has summarized the ESRD-related provisions of the new budget law, H.R.1892 – Bipartisan Budget Act of 2018; the Act “will expand the use of home dialysis therapy through use of telehealth services; expedite patient access to quality dialysis care at newly certified facilities; and extend authority for Special Needs Plans (C-SNPs) without interruption in care.”  In addition, payments for non-emergency ambulance use are reduced.

While the legislation as passed and signed may not be effective until HHS converts it to administrative law, the original lawyerese can be found at:

NW16 2/24+ Erase the Wait Portland

The Erase the Wait program will present a training in Portland OR for volunteer transplant mentors on February 24, 2018, and for CKD and dialysis patients on March 18, March 25, and April 1, 2018.  For details see, the graphic below, and

Previous Erase the Date mentor and mentee participants are invited to a reunion in Portland on March 14, 2018; for details see

Discounted ticket sales for Donate Life Northwest’s Family Night Trailblazers basketball game March 30, 2018 in Portland close on February 26, 2018.

2/22 QIP CY2018 Call

CMS will present a February 22, 2018 conference call on ESRD QIP: Final Rule for CY 2018.  Topics include the ESRD QIP legislative framework; measures, standards, scoring method, and payment reduction scale for PY 2021; modifications to PY 2019 and PY 2020 policies; and  a question and answer session.  The target audience includes dialysis clinics and organizations, nephrologists, hospitals with dialysis units, billers/coders, and QI experts.  For details and registration see, and for a copy of the Final Rule, see

2/8+ CDC Flu Webinar

CDC will present a free February 8, 2018 webinar called Update on the 2017-2018 Influenza Season for Clinicians.  The webinar is part of CDC’s Clinician Outreach and Communication Activity or COCA series.  Influenza-related hospitalization rates so far in the 2017-2018 season are exceeding milestones set during the high-severity H3N2-predominant 2014-2015 season.  During this call, CDC flu experts will address clinical issues for influenza patients, including those with severe disease, and provide the latest updates on the 2017-2018 influenza season.  Find more information and registration instructions at  The webinar will be recorded for later playback.  Free CE credits are available for both the live webinar and the recordings.