National and international nephrology organizations have identified substantial unmet supportive care needs of patients with kidney disease and issued recommendations. In the United States the most recent comprehensive effort to change kidney care, the Advancing American Kidney Health Initiative, does not explicitly address supportive care needs, although it attempts to implement more patient-centered care. This perspective from the leaders of the Coalition for Supportive Care of Kidney Patients advocates for urgent policy changes to improve patient-centered care and the quality of life of seriously ill patients with kidney disease. It argues for the provision of supportive care by an interdisciplinary team led by nephrology clinicians to improve shared decision-making, advance care planning, pain and symptom management, the explicit offering of active medical management without dialysis as an option for patients who may not benefit from dialysis, and the removal by CMS and all other payors of financial and regulatory disincentives to quality supportive care, including hospice, for chronic kidney disease and end-stage kidney disease patients. It also emphasizes that all educational and accreditation programs for nephrology clinicians include kidney supportive care and its essential role in the care of patients with kidney disease.
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