Wolf River Consulting Honors National Kidney Month and World Kidney Day

Please join Wolf River Consulting Group in honoring National Kidney Month and celebrating World Kidney Day on March 14th. Kidney disease is a condition that affects us all with nearly 1 in 3 Americans at risk for chronic kidney disease (CKD). Although there is no cure for CKD, early detection, treatment, and commitment to a healthy lifestyle can prevent the need for dialysis and kidney transplantation.

Although causes for CKD can vary, diabetes remains the leading cause for kidney failure, impacting blood pressure and cardiovascular functioning. American Indian and Alaska Native people have among the highest rates of diabetes in the world, which places them at considerable risk for CKD and end stage renal disease (ESRD) – the point when kidneys no longer function well, and the patient needs dialysis or a kidney transplant. Diabetes is responsible for 44% of all cases of ESRD and about 69% of new cases among American Indians and Alaska Natives. The good news is that inroads are being made in addressing kidney disease in Indian Country, with much of the credit going to approaches that combine kidney disease care with regular diabetes management. Recent published data from the CDC reports that while diabetes-related cases of ESRD across all demographic groups dropped, the most dramatic decline occurred among American Indians and Alaska Natives, who went from a rate that was 5 times that of whites to now being on par with whites.

Yet, there is much more work to do in fighting kidney disease in Indian Country. One area is to increase awareness and access to kidney transplant information; another area is to ensure needed services and medications are available for those who receive a transplant. Efforts like these could boost the rate of American Indian and Alaska Native dialysis patients receiving a transplant, which currently stands lower than for other racial groups.  

While kidney disease is disproportionately present in Indian country and remains a serious public health concern, treatment is available, and its progression is not inevitable. With programs in place that reflect the needs, concerns, and constraints of Indigenous rural and urban communities and the development of culturally tailored materials and resources, we can ensure that successful outcomes are reached, and the occurrence of kidney disease reduced.        

This National Kidney Month and World Kidney Day we encourage you to take steps to maintain a healthy lifestyle and talk to your health care provider about kidney health.