In the United States, approximately 130,000 people progress to end-stage kidney disease (ESKD) each year, and the number has been growing steadily since the early 2000s. The majority of these individuals, 40% – 60% according to most studies, begin dialysis in an unplanned fashion, with only 30% – 40% having seen a nephrologist in the year prior to starting dialysis. Despite the increasing use of home dialysis modalities and kidney transplantation, these preferred options remain significantly underutilized compared to in-center hemodialysis, particularly among racial and ethnic minority groups.
The purpose of this paper is not to present well-described statistics of the chronic kidney disease (CKD) and ESKD population, nor is it to review established side effects of dialysis. Instead, Healthmap Solutions (Healthmap) would like to highlight five success stories from members* in our Kidney Population Health Management program who found themselves transitioning to ESKD. In each instance, the member was struggling with some aspect of their transition, and a Healthmap Care Navigator (a registered nurse dedicated to the member who works as part of a greater multidisciplinary care management team) was able to listen, provide support and care coordination, and ultimately ease the member’s transition to ESKD.