RECOGNIZING WORLD KIDNEY DAY; Congressional Record Vol. 163, No. 41
(Extensions of Remarks - March 09, 2017)

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[Extensions of Remarks]
[Page E304]
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                      RECOGNIZING WORLD KIDNEY DAY


                          HON. ROBIN L. KELLY

                              of illinois

                    in the house of representatives

                        Thursday, March 9, 2017

  Ms. KELLY of Illinois. Mr. Speaker, today, we recognize World Kidney 
Day and the impact of Chronic Kidney Disease, or CKD, across the globe. 
In the U.S., 26 million adults have kidney disease and 1-in-3 is at 
risk. We have to reverse this trend.
  African Americans, in particular, suffer from kidney failure at more 
than three times the rate of Caucasians and constitute more than 32 
percent of all patients receiving dialysis for kidney failure. A study 
says that Hispanics develop kidney failure at a rate of 2:1 compared to 
Whites. Improving care earlier to stop or slow progression of the 
disease, and improving access to kidney transplantation for those who 
do experience kidney failure, are successful tools in order to assist 
millions of Americans impacted by CKD.
  Over 675,000 Americans have irreversible kidney failure, or end-stage 
renal disease, and need dialysis or a kidney transplant to survive. CKD 
shortens life expectancy by 5-11 years and more than 95,000 people died 
of kidney disease last year. Those with diabetes, high blood pressure, 
a family history of kidney failure, aged 60 or older, or from minority 
populations are at the greatest risk.
  In order to avoid an irreversible stage, there are two simple, quick, 
and inexpensive tests for chronic kidney disease. If caught early, 
diet, exercise, and medications can help slow or even reverse some of 
the damage caused by kidney disease, allowing patients a better life.
  I had the opportunity to meet with kidney patients, including Leilah 
Sampson from Chicago, who is a volunteer with the National Kidney 
Foundation. When she was 19, Leilah was studying to be a nurse at the 
historic Tuskegee University when she discovered that she had kidney 
disease. It quickly progressed to kidney failure, and has since caused 
significant physical and mental health issues.
  How many lives can be improved or saved by a simple set of tests that 
costs $80 to $140? More needs to be done in order to promote testing by 
physicians and reward them for identifying and managing this chronic 
disease. In addition, empowering patients through education can help 
allow them to make informed decisions about all available treatments, 
further improving their lives.
  As Chairwoman of the Congressional Black Caucus Health Braintrust, I 
am committed to working with Congress and stakeholders in the public 
health and research communities to promote strategies to fight kidney