Reps. Sánchez, Mullin, Holding, Butterfield Introduce Legislation to Encourage Early Detection of Chronic Kidney Disease

October 3, 2017
Press Release

WASHINGTON—Last week, House Democratic Caucus Vice Chair, Linda Sánchez (D-CA), along with Congressmen Markwayne Mullin (R-OK), George Holding (R-NC), and G.K. Butterfield (D-NC) introduced H.R. 3867.  H.R. 3867 will establish a pilot program within the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) that encourages practitioners to identify early symptoms of chronic kidney disease (CKD), lowering overall health care costs and providing better treatment for patients with CKD. 

An estimated 30 million people—15% of our adult population—have chronic kidney disease.  However, an overwhelming percentage (96%) of CKD cases often go undiagnosed.  H.R. 3867 would boost early detection and improve the outcome rates of CKD patients.  

 “As the saying goes, ‘an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.’  There is more we can and must do for the 30 million Americans living with chronic kidney disease,” said Congresswoman Sánchez.  “That’s why I’ve partnered with Representatives Mullin, Holding, and Butterfield to introduce this bill, which would create a pilot program to identify and treat chronic kidney disease early.  Slowing the disease’s progression to end stage renal disease will help keep people healthier longer and drive Medicare’s costs down.  I urge my colleagues to support this legislation so we can save lives and keep Medicare’s costs in check – at the same time.”

“Nationwide, approximately 1 in 3 adults with diabetes is likely to have chronic kidney disease.  In my home state of Oklahoma, diabetes was the sixth leading cause of death in 2010,” said Congressman Mullin.  “Oklahomans are at a much higher risk of developing this potentially life threatening disease.  This bill encourages Medicare providers to detect chronic kidney disease at an earlier stage leading to better health care and lower costs to taxpayers.  Incorporating early detection and healthy lifestyle choices along with proper preventative treatments can help Oklahomans stay healthier and live longer while simultaneously bringing down Medicare costs.” 

“Chronic Kidney Disease affects nearly 30 million people in the United States,” said Congressman Holding.  “I’m proud to help introduce the Chronic Kidney Disease bill so doctors can work with their patients to detect CKD early and delay the progression of end stage renal disease.  When nearly 6% of Medicare’s budget is spent on 1% of Medicare’s enrollment, there’s a problem.  Detecting this disease early will hopefully drive down that skyrocketing cost as well as benefit countless patients and their families.”

“African Americans suffer from kidney failure at a rate three times higher than other Americans, and Chronic Kidney Disease disproportionately affects people in North Carolina’s First Congressional District,” said Congressman Butterfield.  “H.R. 3867 addresses this problem through preventive efforts that help reduce the chances of end stage renal disease, dialysis, and premature death.  With earlier detection of CKD, we can help people live longer, healthier lives.”

H.R. 3867 was introduced into the House on September, 28, 2017.  The bill has been referred to the House Energy and Commerce Committee and the House Committee on Ways and Means.