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Kidney Care Community Voices Strong Support for Kidney Patients' Right to Choose
Date:10/22/2007

House of Representatives' Extension of Medicare Secondary Payer (MSP) for Kidney Dialysis Patients Praised for Providing Clinical, Economic and Family Benefits for Patients

WASHINGTON, Oct. 22 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- In response to the House-passed Children's Health and Medicare Protection (CHAMP) Act of 2007 provision to extend Medicare Secondary Payer (MSP) in the End Stage Renal Disease (ESRD) program for patients who rely on dialysis care, Kidney Care Partners (KCP)-- an alliance of patient advocates, dialysis professionals, care providers and manufacturers working together to improve quality of care for individuals with kidney disease and kidney failure --strongly endorses extending patients' right to remain with their commercial coverage for an additional 12 months - a total of 42 months. KCP believes that the additional 12 months strikes the correct balance between the current law of 30 months and proposed extensions of up to 60 months.

Under the current Medicare MSP provision, Medicare takes over as primary coverage after 30 months. The CHAMP act would extend the MSP provision an additional 12 months for patients within large health plans - those plans defined as having more than 100 employees. This extension would benefit approximately 10,000 out of the more than 400,000 Medicare ESRD patients and would have a negligible impact on large employer premiums.

"Despite what some large corporations are saying, this extension impacts a modest number of patients spread across a much larger population and would be a huge benefit to patients and the Medicare benefit," said Dr. Edward Jones, a practicing nephrologist and Chairman of KCP. "A 12 month extension of the MSP provision gives some patients with private insurance a choice in their healthcare coverage. Further, KCP believes that extending this provision by 12 months will encourage large health plans to focus more heavily on disease prevention, address co-morbidities and encourage
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SOURCE Kidney Care Partners
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