All posts by Pattie Dash

Greater Baltimore Kidney Walk

THANK YOU to everyone who came out to walk with us on Sunday, October 6th at the Weinberg Y in Waverly. The weather was fantastic and the crowd poured in! We are grateful to every community supporter who had booths in our Mission Tent. Shout out to Keswick, University of Maryland Medical Center, TRIO, Living Legacy and more!

Huge thank you to all of our sponsors who generously supported our event! We are grateful to our National Presenting Sponsorship, Fresenius Medical Care, National Multi-Market Sponsor Azura and Relypsa as well as our local Presenting Sponsor Allmond & Company LLC, local Platinum Sponsor Mid-Atlantic Nephrology Associates, PA, and additional sponsors include: Sponsor Vascular Surgery Associates LLC, Horizon Therapeutics, University of Maryland Medical Center, Alderson Loop, Reli Group, KPMG, AstraZeneca, Kelly Associates and IDF. THANK YOU- two little words that mean a great deal for individuals who suffer with kidney disease! Your support matters! #kidneywalk

Congratulations to our Top Walk Team- Lucy’s 9North Team for raising $8,248, way to go!

Watch for more photos and details from the walk this week! There is still time to donate, help us make our goal of $202,500- we have $20,000 to go!

The Big Ask: The Big Give

In partnership with the University of Maryland Transplant Center
November 10, 2019 – Registration and Lunch Begins at NOON!

THE BIG ASK: THE BIG GIVE – A FREE Workshop on Living Kidney Donation

Do you have end-stage renal disease? Are you in need of a kidney transplant or know someone who does? Or have you considered becoming a living donor?

We can help! The University of Maryland Transplant Center has performes numerous living donor kidney transplants annually. Come join us for this interactive workshop where we will provide valuable information and advice on the best, most effective strategies for finding a living kidney donor.

This free 4-hour workshop will teach kidney patients, families, and friends how to:
• Find a living kidney donor
• Educate family and friends about living donor kidney transplant
• Tell your story through social media and other channels

Visit our website for more information. To register for this event visit click here today! Registration and lunch begins at NOON!

For more information about living donation click here.

Take Action for Kidney Patients

It’s easy to make a difference! Sign up now to learn how to get involved with legislation relating to kidney disease, transplantation and organ donation.

Join Our Effort!

Join our network of advocates to make a difference for kidney patients. You can influence public policy relating to kidney health, organ donation, and transplantation though simple activities like emailing, calling or tweeting your legislators. These campaigns require the participation of dedicated volunteers who want share their story in order to make change happen in government and across the nation. We’ll show you how – just sign up to be an advocate and we will send you the materials to allow you quick, easy ways to have an impact! Sign up today!

President Trump Announces Bold Vision for Transforming Kidney Care

New York, NY, July 10, 2019-Today President Trump announced a bold vision for transforming kidney care for the estimated 37 million Americans affected by kidney disease. During a speech at the Ronald Reagan International Trade Center attended by National Kidney Foundation (NKF) volunteers, patients, care partners and leadership, government officials and other kidney organizations, the President laid out the Administration’s detailed plan to help increase living organ donationdeceased organ donation, increase earlier detection and earlier care of chronic kidney disease (CKD), and increase incentives to develop new and cutting-edge treatments for kidney disease, including advancing home dialysis.

“The Administration’s commitment to charting a new course for kidney health will help revolutionize transplantation and dialysis and advance new innovations, therapies and treatments which patients everywhere have been waiting on for far too long,” said Kevin Longino, CEO of National Kidney Foundation and a kidney transplant patient. “Kidney care is, for the first time in decades, experiencing a renaissance that can transform the lives of millions of Americans while also saving taxpayers billions of dollars. NKF is grateful to the Administration and our bi-partisan Congressional champions who are elevating kidney disease as a national priority.”

In January, 2019, NKF released a comprehensive path forward for increasing kidney transplantation which included many of the key aspects the President announced in his speech today. In the plan, NKF outlined necessary steps to expand financial assistance offered to living organ donors to cover all expenses related to organ donation, align Medicare and Medicaid Reimbursement to healthcare providers to ensure earlier treatment and care for CKD patients, implement a demonstration program at the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Innovation that would take a patient-centered approach to testing changes in payment and care delivery, permanently extend Medicare coverage of immunosuppressive drugs for kidney transplant recipients, reduce the discard of kidneys that could be used to provide better outcomes and quality of life for patients, and make key improvements to organ procurement organization (OPO) procedures.

“The time is now for the entire kidney community to embrace the momentum of today’s announcement, work with the Administration and Congress to advance policies which can significantly benefit kidney patients and their families, and together change the current trajectory of kidney care,” said Holly Kramer, MD, MPH, President of National Kidney Foundation.

In the United States, 37 million adults are estimated to have chronic kidney disease (CKD) – and most aren’t aware of it. 1 in 3 American adults is at risk for CKD. Risk factors for kidney disease include diabeteshigh blood pressureheart diseaseobesity, a family history of kidney failure, and being age 60 or older. People of African American, Hispanic, Native-American, Asian or Pacific Islander descent are at increased risk for developing the disease. African Americans are about 3 times more likely than Whites to develop end-stage kidney disease (ESKD or kidney failure). Compared to non-Hispanics, Hispanics are almost 1.3 times more likely to receive a diagnosis of kidney failure.

More than 726,000 Americans have irreversible kidney failure, or end-stage renal disease (ESRD), and need dialysis or a kidney transplant to survive. More than 500,000 of these patients receive dialysis at least three times per week to replace kidney function. Nearly 100,000 Americans are on the waitlist for a kidney transplant right now. Depending on where a patient lives, the average wait time for a kidney transplant can be upwards of three to seven years. Living organ donation not only saves lives, it saves money. Each year, Medicare spends approximately $89,000 per dialysis patient and less than half, $35,000, for a transplant patient.

About National Kidney Foundation Living Organ Donation Resources:

THE BIG ASK: THE BIG GIVE platform, which provides nationwide outreach, is designed to increase kidney transplantation through training and tools that help patients and families find a living donor. It includes direct patient and caregiver support through our toll-free help line 855-NKF-CARES, peer mentoring from a fellow kidney patient or a living donor, online communities, an advocacy campaign to remove barriers to donation, and a multi-media public awareness campaign. All resources are free and designed to teach kidney patients, or their advocates, how to make a “big ask” to their friends, loved ones, or community to consider making a “big give,” a living organ donation.The National Kidney Foundation (NKF) is the largest, most comprehensive and longstanding organization dedicated to the awareness, prevention and treatment of kidney disease. For more information about NKF visit

Americans with CKD Now at 37 Million

Updated Kidney Disease: The Basics Fact Sheet Now Online, Americans with CKD Now at 37 Million 

The number of American adults who have chronic kidney disease is now estimated to be 37 million – that’s one out of every seven or 15 percent of the adult population – according to the latest data analyzed by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The higher estimate in the number of Americans affected by chronic kidney disease, versus statistics reported in previous years, is due to several factors, including differences in study time frames, methodologies and populations, as well as an aging population and increased prevalence of risk factors such as diabetes and hypertension.

National Kidney Foundation Partnering with Orchard Hill Rehabilitation & Healthcare Center – Renal Support Group

Chronic Kidney Disease Management Program

Towson Skilled Nursing Facility Partners with NKFMDDE for Monthly Support Group Meetings

Orchard Hill Rehabilitation & Healthcare Center, a Marquis Health Services member located in Towson, has launched a chronic kidney disease (CKD) management program, naming board-certified nephrologist Dr. Kamal Sewaralthahab, MD, NEP, FASN as its director. As a central component of the new program, Orchard Hill is partnering with the National Kidney Foundation Serving Maryland and Delaware (NKFMDDE) to host monthly support group meetings for those living with CKD, their families and caregivers.

“Our specialized CKD program and partnership with the National Kidney Foundation aim to address an immediate need here in the Baltimore area,” said Norman Rokeach, Marquis’ chief executive officer. “We are committed to creating a center of skilled nursing and healthcare excellence here at Orchard Hill and are pleased to welcome Dr. Sewaralthahab, one of the area’s most well-respected nephrologists, to lead this new initiative.” “We are proud to partner with Orchard Hill Rehabilitation & Healthcare Center to bring education along with resources, services and support to patients at the facility and our community,” said Pattie Dash, NKFMDDE’s executive director. “We believe that one of the best ways to serve is to invest in our community to help raise awareness for the prevention and treatment of kidney disease.”

Monthly CKD Support Group is Open to the Public

Orchard Hill’s CKD support group meetings will be held on the third Thursday of the month. Free and open to the public, they will take place at the skilled nursing facility, 111 West Rd., Towson Md. 21204. NKFMDDE will bring in speakers to address a range of key concerns. Each meeting will include a dietitian providing nutrition information. Participants will then have a general discussion, getting tips and advice from one another on managing CKD. For a schedule or to register, visit NKFMDDE’s Facebook page.

Thank you Orchard Hill for your support and dedication to OUR community!

New Home Test for Kidney Damage Shows Promising Results

Clinical trial released after nearly 1,000 people participated 

February 7, 2019, New York,

NY– A clinical trial that followed nearly 1,000 people using a new home test for chronic kidney disease (CKD) shows a high percentage of the participants were happy with the process and preferred it to getting tested in a doctor’s office. The National Kidney Foundation (NKF), Geisinger and evaluated smartphone home testing for CKD. Patients with hypertension – a major risk factor for CKD – that had not been tested in the previous 12 months were given the option of using a smartphone urinalysis test at home and the results were impressive. Of the participants that received a kit, 71 percent adhered to testing, 98 percent of patients who attempted a home test succeeded, and 89 percent stated they prefer home testing over testing at the physician’s office. Among patients who completed home testing mean score for whether they would recommend home urine testing to a friend or colleague was 8.9/10 (i.e. Net Promoter Score of 62). Despite current guidelines that recommend CKD testing yearly for adults with diabetes and/or hypertension, less than 10 percent of those with hypertension and less than 40 percent of those with diabetes are currently completely assessed. “Albuminuria is often the earliest sign of kidney disease, and yet, in the majority of people at increased risk due to diabetes or hypertension, it is not tested,” said Kerry Willis, PhD, NKF Chief Scientific Officer. “This new test has the potential to help millions of patients find out they have CKD while there is still time to prevent progression to kidney failure.” About 30 million American adults are affected by CKD, but nearly 90 percent don’t know they have this life-threatening illness. Early intervention can slow the progression of the disease, which can be deadly if not caught in its early stages. The trial investigators were Julie Leddy; Christina Yule; Elisabeth Graboski; Jamie Green, MD; Juli Molecavage, DHA, MHA; and Alex R. Chang, MD, MS, all from Geisinger; and Josef Coresh, MD, of Johns Hopkins University. The investigators concluded that the use of the mailed, smartphone kits may offer an additional modality to improve compliance with albuminuria screening and may be preferable for some patients. The trial, which began in April:

  • Examined the effect of mailed, smartphone urinalysis kits ( test) to improve detection of albuminuria;
  • Randomized 999 non-diabetic patients with hypertension, who were receiving primary care at Geisinger who had never previously completed screening. Patients were randomized into two groups; one group receiving the usual care; and one group who received a mailed urinalysis kit; 
  • All patients received an educational letter and an electronic lab order for urinalysis to be done at a Geisinger lab;
  • Half of the patients (intervention) also were called to ask if they would like to receive a home smartphone urinalysis test; 253 were reached by phone and 69/97 (71.1 percent) of consented patients completed the home test;
  • Patients were followed for three months to see if screening was completed; patients with abnormal results from the home test were contacted by the study physicians.

Overall, the intervention increased proteinuria screening completion by (28.9% vs. 18.0%; p<0.001). There was no difference in the proportion of the detected albuminuria cases between the intervention and control groups. “The home testing was very well-received and easy to do for patients,” Dr. Chang said. “Important limitations of this study were that we required patients to consent by telephone before sending testing kits. Also, few patients who had abnormal urinalysis findings went to the clinic lab for their confirmation testing in the three-month follow-up period. Future research should evaluate optimal screening and confirmation testing strategies-all completed at the comfort of home.” NKF provided the funding for the trial and the Geisinger Institutional Review Board approved the research study.   Kidney Disease FactsIn the United States 30 million adults are estimated to have chronic kidney disease—and most aren’t aware of it.  1 in 3 American adults are at risk for chronic kidney disease.  Risk factors for kidney disease include diabetes, high blood pressure, heart disease, obesity and family history.  People of African American, Hispanic, Native American, Asian or Pacific Islander descent are at increased risk for developing the disease.  African Americans are 3 times more likely than Whites, and Hispanics are nearly 1.5 times more likely than non-Hispanics to develop end stage renal disease (kidney failure). About GeisingerOne of the nation’s most innovative health services organizations, Geisinger serves more than 1.5 million patients in Pennsylvania and New Jersey. The system includes 13 hospital campuses, a nearly 600,000-member health plan, two research centers and the Geisinger Commonwealth School of Medicine. Geisinger is known for its focus on caring and innovative programs including the ProvenCare® best-practice approach to maximize quality, safety and value; ProvenHealth Navigator® advanced medical home; Springboard Health® population health program to improve the health of an entire community; ProvenExperience™ to provide refunds to patients unhappy with their care experience; and Geisinger’s MyCode® Community Health Initiative, the largest healthcare system-based precision health project in the world. With more than 215,000 volunteer participants enrolled, MyCode is conducting extensive research and returning medically actionable results to participants. A physician-led organization, with approximately 32,000 employees and more than 1,800 employed physicians, Geisinger leverages an estimated $12.7 billion positive annual impact on the Pennsylvania and New Jersey economies. Repeatedly recognized nationally for integration, quality and service, Geisinger has a long-standing commitment to patient care, medical education, research and community service. For more information, visit, or connect with us on FacebookInstagramLinkedIn and TwitterAbout is transforming prevention for kidney disease for the millions of patients who fall through the cracks of the existing, centralized system. Having created a new category of smartphone urinalysis that can replace the centralized lab device, the company offers a full service that addresses the staggering cost and burden of CKD. With an ‘adherence as a service’ offering, patients get a test kit sent home and results are automatically transmitted to their medical record for physician review. Patients can test themselves at their own convenience, detect the disease early and get the care they need.  In Israel and Europe,’s digital urinalysis pathways are already a reality for over 100,000 patients. The National Kidney Foundation (NKF) is the largest, most comprehensive, and longstanding patient-centric organization dedicated to the awareness, prevention, and treatment of kidney disease in the U.S. For more information about NKF, visit

Roys in Baltimore Supports NKFMDDE

Written by Jamie Buschman, Chef Partner, Roy’s Baltimore

My father William Buschman was 28 years old when he was diagnosed with diabetes. Unfortunately this disease caused other problems for him late in life. At 42 years old he lost his sight completely, and months later he was told he had kidney failure. Both kidneys stopped working, I was about 12 years old and had watched my father fight so many obstacles.

As a family we learned how to make it through day by day with doctor appointments and dialysis. I learned the hardships that people and their loved ones go through daily to survive, to live another day while waiting for a transplant. My father was very blessed to receive a call the day before Easter in 2001. The next day he had received a kidney from a young boy from Louisiana. I am thrilled to share that 18 years later he still has the kidney and is keeping busy building amazing furniture. It’s an honor to be part of the National Kidney Foundation Serving Maryland & Delaware’s Santé A Taste of Baltimore event. They have helped my family and so many others. Their help and support to those trying to make it another day, lightens the load of the world from their shoulders. I’m proud to be a part of this opportunity because the NFKMDDE has done so much to help raise money and spread their generosity to those in rough situations. I am glad that Roy’s has provided an outlet of support for a cause that I am so passionate about. 

To learn more about the event, to register to participate, visit!