How Strive Is Challenging the Status Quo of Kidney Care

Author : Strive Health
Dr. Alice Wei, M.D., and Senior Medical Director of Dialysis at Strive

Chronic kidney disease affects more than one in seven American adults or about 37 million people. When exacerbating factors such as diabetes, high blood pressure, repeated infections or injuries, drug and tobacco use are not managed well, the risk of chronic kidney disease (CKD) advancing to end stage kidney disease (ESKD) significantly increases. With each CKD stage progression, cost to US health plans increases exponentially. Medicare alone spends an estimated $130 billion on kidney care, including nearly $30 billion to provide dialysis to 554,000 Americans with kidney failure. Additionally, patients with CKD, even in early disease stages, carry a disproportionate burden of cardiovascular morbidity, mortality, healthcare utilization, and costs.

The high costs and high health care utilization associated with CKD combined with the prevalence of the disease underscore the need to identify interventions and strategies that reduce costs and utilization, prevent or slow disease progression, and address contributing factors which exacerbate the disease to improve patient outcomes.

Identification of these drivers of costs is important for shaping health policy decisions as it allows for more accurate attribution of health care utilization and intervention for other determinants of health within this population. If CKD is detected early, treatment is initiated, and other determinants of health are addressed, it may slow the decline in kidney function, delay kidney failure and potentially offset the downstream impacts of this disease.

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